Sunday, February 5, 2012

Revealed Mad Cow Disease: Plans to secretly test 30,000 NHS blood transfusion patients as CJD fears escalate

Thousands of NHS patients could be secretly monitored by the Government for symptoms of the human form of mad cow disease amid concerns that there could be another wave of infections.

Experts advising the Department of Health believe patients who have received more than 80 blood transfusions are most at risk of developing the fatal brain disease because it can be passed on through infected blood.

They say monitoring these patients could give vital clues about the way the disease develops and is transmitted from person to person and could help work out whether there are likely to be further deaths.

It could also inform officials whether the risk from blood donations needs to be treated more seriously.

But they are considering conducting their surveillance secretly because they fear that informing patients they are at risk and are being monitored will cause unnecessary alarm.

The proposals have been discussed by a powerful panel of leading scientists and doctors, which advises the Government on the disease, known as variant CJD. Read More