Brucellosis

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Health – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 27th April 1964.

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Photo of Sir Timothy Kitson Sir Timothy Kitson , Richmond (Yorks) 12:00 am, 27th April 1964

asked the Minister of Health if he will make brucellosis a notifiable disease; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Bernard Braine Bernard Braine , Essex South East

No, Sir. I am advised that notification would be of little practical value because of the length of time that may elapse before the disease is recognised.

Photo of Sir Timothy Kitson Sir Timothy Kitson , Richmond (Yorks)

Is my hon. Friend aware that this is very unsatisfactory and that England, Scotland and Wales are about the only countries in Europe where brucellosis is not now a notifiable disease? As there have been serious outbreaks of the disease, will not he ask the Minister to look into the matter again?

Photo of Bernard Braine Bernard Braine , Essex South East

Our experience in this country is that delay in recognising the disease makes notification of very little help in tracing the source of infection. As my hon. Friend probably knows, the disease is not normally transmitted from man to man but is the result of contact with infected animals or by drinking infected milk. The best way to deal with it is by routine examination of untreated milk. However, in view of what my hon. Friend has said, I will ask my right hon. Friend to look at our arrangements again.