HC Deb 24 January 2002 vol 378 cc1087-9W
Miss Kirkbride

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the role of Dr. Elizabeth Miller(a) in the designing of safety studies into MMR, (b) in clearing the original UK trial cohort of 10,000 children and (c) in advising his Department on the safety of MMR. [28788]

Yvette Cooper

Dr. Elizabeth Miller is currently head of the Immunisation Division of the Communicable Diseases Surveillance Centre of the Public Health Laboratory Services (PHLS). With PHLS colleagues Dr. Miller has conducted a number of studies designed to investigate possible adverse effects of measles, mumps and rubella vaccines. The results of these studies have been subjected to independent peer review and published as follows:

  1. 1. Miller C., Miller E., Rowe K., Bowie C., Judd M., Walker D. Surveillance of Symptoms following MMR Vaccine in Children. The Practitioner, 1989; 233: 69–75.
  2. 2. Miller E., Goldacre M., Pugh S., Colville A., Farrington P., Flower A., Nash J., Macfarlane L., Tettmar R. Risk of aseptic meningitis after Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccine in UK children. Lancet 1993;341:979–982.
  3. 3. Farrington P., Pugh S., Colville A., Flower A., Nash J., Morgan-Capner P., Rush M., Miller E. A new method for active surveillance of adverse events from Diphtheria/tetanus/pertussis and Measles/mumps/rubella vaccines. Lancet 1995; 345:567–569.
  4. 4. Nash J.Q., Chandrakumar M., Farrington C.P., Williamson S., Miller E. Feasibility study for identifying adverse events attributable to vaccination by record linkage. Epidemiology and Infection 1995; 114: 475–480.
  5. 5. Farrington C.P., Nash J., Miller E. Case Series Analysis of adverse reactions to vaccines: A comparative evaluation. American Journal of Epidemiology 1996;143:1165–73.
  6. 6. Taylor B., Miller E., Farrington P., Petropoulos M.C., Favot-Mayaud I., Li J., Waight P.A. Autism and measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine: no epidemiological evidence for a causal association. Lancet 1999; 353:2026–2029.
  7. 7. Miller E., Waight P., Farrington P., Andrews N., Stowe J., Taylor B. Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura and MMR vaccine (short report). Archives of Disease in Childhood 2001;84:227–229.
  8. 8. Farrington C.P., Miller E., Taylor B. MMR and autism: further evidence against a causal association. Vaccine 2001; 19:3632–3635.

Dr. Elizabeth Miller, under the direction of the then head of the immunisation division, Dr. Christine Miller, assisted in the design and analysis of the study in 10,000 children that was carried out in 1987–88. The results of that study were not used for licensure of MMR vaccine in the United Kingdom. The responsibility for licensure resides with the Medicines Control Agency and is based on the evidence of vaccine safety, efficacy and quality provided by the manufacturer.

The Department would expect the head of the immunisation division to provide advice to the Department on all aspects of immunisation. Dr. Miller would also provide advice to the Department's independent advisory committee, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, and, as required to the Committee on Safety of Medicines.