Minister McGrath should leave the medical advice to the professionals

09 October 2017

Labour Party Health spokesperson, Alan Kelly TD has said representations made by Minister Finian McGrath on behalf of anti-HPV vaccine groups are unhelpful.

It follows reports in the Irish Times that Minister McGrath made anti-HPV vaccine representations to Minister Harris three times since becoming Minister.

Deputy Kelly said:

“Questions need to be asked of Minister McGrath and whether it is appropriate for a Minister in the Department of Health to persistently make representations on behalf of a group that has led a mass misinformation campaign.

“As a Minister in the Department of Health, surely Minister McGrath should leave the medical advice to medical professionals rather than allowing himself to be swayed by advocacy groups.

“How are the public supposed to have confidence in this vaccine when we are hearing yet another story about Minister McGrath undermining medical facts about the HPV vaccine?

“The minister should read up on the facts about the HPV vaccine provided by medical professionals. The vaccine which is on offer protects against two types of HPV, which causes 73% of all cervical cancers.

“We all know that Ireland has one of the highest rates of cervical cancer in the EU, and for a Junior Minister of Health to be so persistent about unscientific claims is extremely worrying. “

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