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Interview 15

Brief Outline: For DTaP/IPV/Hib' Followed recommendations of health professionals. For MMR' Experiences of friends who had had their child immunised were useful. Gathered information from newspaper articles, Department of Health leaflets and the media. Spoke to her parents and friends.
Background: At time of interview' married, one son aged 1 year. Parent's occupation' Mother- Full time mum, Father- Commercial Ship Operator. Ethnic background' White-British (Scottish).

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Media reports have created fear amongst parents and some of the reports weren't accurate enough.

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I think they are scaring us a little bit more than they should be. I think new-time mums, everything's a worry to you, you know, you've just brought a baby into the world, you feel that you can't give this baby enough. And then there's people scaring on every aspect of having a baby, that if you give it too much of this that's wrong, and if you do this that's wrong. And I just feel that they should be more careful who they're scaring because you just want to protect this little human being that you've created and you'd do anything not to... And I think some of the reports just aren't accurate enough, just some of your normal papers, your daily papers you just think, 'You've just scared me from that, that one comment. Whereas where's the fact, where's the professor saying it or, you know, where's the evidence?' I know some people will just read it and go, 'Right, that's that, there's no more jabs in my baby' you know. And it's easy to do that. I think they have scared a lot of people out of it. A few of my friends are scared. I'm scared but I've put it to the back of my mind because I know I'm doing the right thing.

 

It's natural to worry but it feels so good afterwards knowing your child is safe.

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I think it's good to talk to other people that have went through it, because I know that even going through the three immunisations that I've been through before and, and I clearly remember the panic a week before, how I was feeling. Maybe it was just my fear of needles but I don't know, how I was feeling until how I felt after it. And because it's in the past it's, you know, nothing happened, 'That's him immunised, I don't have to worry about any of them diseases. I know that he's fine, he's had his immunisation against it, I know he'll be healthy'. So just, I think you can benefit a lot from speaking to people, saying, 'Oh, yes, I know, I feel your worries and it's okay if you're scared. But I put my kid through it and look what happened' they're fine you know. I think it's good to know that it's safe to, it's natural to worry because you love your child so much that you would do anything to protect them. It's fine to worry, but speak to others that have went through it and they'll tell you they worried just as much as you and they got through it.
 
 
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Trusts the government to make responsible decisions and warns of the risks of being misled when...

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Immunisations are a great thing and we're lucky in this country to have them offered to our children. So I strongly believe that we should get it done. The autism link is the only link that I've really heard about. I've not, to be honest I've not researched it or, maybe as much as I should. I just think sometimes you can read too much on things and get yourself all worked up and then it doesn't necessarily lead you to the right place anyway.

I've spoke to my parents about it, I've spoke to friends, and we're all of the same, like that the government wouldn't let you be doing this to your little child that's only one if there was something seriously going to happen to him in later life. And you have to go with that, just have faith that it'll work. And I've trusted the professionals this far. They delivered my son for me,  they've looked after us at the beginning, so I don't see why I should turn against their great advice now when it's got us this far and everything went fine so far. 

 
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After the 2, 3 and 4 months old immunisations, her son had flu-like symptoms for a couple of days.

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After the three immunisations that he's had previous to this he has been a little bit ill, he's kind of took flu-like symptoms, the fever. It's, they tell you to expect these things but when you see it happening and you, in front of you, you do worry, “Have I done the wrong thing? Look at him”. But I just need to remember that doesn't last for long at all. It was only I think two days at the very most that I thought, “He's not himself. What's happened to you?” He was really hot, I gave him a wee bit of Calpol as advised to do and he was fine.

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