Polio - Private Notice Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 11:48 am on 23rd June 2022.

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Photo of Lord Kamall Lord Kamall The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care 11:48 am, 23rd June 2022

I thank my noble friend for that question. There is routine surveillance that happens anyway. However, in this case they have detected it in more than one surveillance. Quite often, it is seen as a one-off and then not seen again for some time; in this case, it has been detected at each interval of the surveillance. We know it is from the Beckton Sewage Treatment Works—in that part of London. I must be careful about the words I use here: clearly, it is mixed up with a lot of other stuff, and we must now work out how we go along the pipe, as it were, and investigate individual pipes to see whether we can locate the source. In theory, it might be possible to find individual households or streets but it is too early to do so. What we are doing here is really world-beating: it is a first and shows that we are ahead. However, one issue in being ahead is that we detect things that would not have been detected earlier, and people are worried about them.