Channel 4 and the ‘cervical cancer vaccine’

I am always dubious about being interviewed (I prefer asking the questions.) I worry about how able I am to say what I mean to say, and often realise there was a better way of saying what I was trying to -  but half an hour after I’ve left the building.

A piece I wrote last year about the ‘cervical cancer vaccine’ attracted attention from both pro-vaccination and anti-vaccination lobbyists.  I was trying to say that although the vaccine sounds promising, there is a lot of data about it that we don’t yet know and that caution, in my view, was warranted. But challenge to one’s views is usually a good thing, and open debate should be healthy. Dispatches, being aired tonight on Channel 4 is about the vaccine and is to apparantly include an interview from both myself and Dr Angela Raffle, the public health doctor who has written about the vaccine in the British Medical Journal, and who I mentioned in my original piece.

Update 9pm: Hmm. Bit disappointed in the emotiveness of the programme and the conclusion, but the programme did light up a lot of the usually fuzzy background about how new healthcare interventions can be marketed to people, especially journalists and doctors. One good reason why we need to think critically about all healthcare interventions.

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