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Email received from the veterinary surgeon, Hugh Coryn - January 18th 2010
"Dr Gillett may be tragically correct in saying vaccination is not currently the answer to TB in cattle. Why should this be? If one considers medical vaccine campaigns; Small Pox, Polio, Diphtheria, Measles. Meningitis...the list goes on, adequately funded of course - why then should vaccination in animals not be a valid option? Indeed, there are many examples of the use of vaccines in both pets and farm animals; Distemper, Leptospirosis, Rabies, Clostridial diseases in sheep, Erysipelas etc. Swine fever and Brucellosis were eradicated by a combination of vaccine and slaughter.
The current EU policy of a ban on vaccination is illogical and tainted with commercial interest. The UK authorities should be prepared to challenge it. People have been campaigning for a vaccine against TB in badgers for over twenty years. Had official support and adequate funding been made available,the current tragic situation may well not have arisen. The current government has abandoned agriculture and particularly livestock ever since the fiasco of Foot and Mouth. Vaccination is the only likely policy to deal with re colonisation and re infection.
Is it not time to reform a revitalised MAFF led by a strong State Veterinary service which is prepared to take a long hard fresh look at the farming methods, epidemiology and treatment of TB in all species?"
Email received January 14th 2010
" If you took twenty different Veterinary Surgeons in a field test of the technique you would be hard pressed to get two sets of similar results; the test is just too difficult under cold wet field conditions! Unfortunately Defra and its predecessor Maff does not like comment or ideas from those who work in the field and have an inbuilt resistance to outside ideas.
All governments are too close to entrenched commercial interests.
Thus resistance to vaccination - totally illogical in many ways."