The UK Department of Health is gearing up to spend £400,000 to fund a media campaign to convince parents of young children to give their children the MMR, according to a story in PR Week.

I can’t help but wonder why they don’t take the money, and hold a large televised debate on the merits, completely open to the public.  Since the claim is that the MMR is emphatically not associated with autism, backed up by solid scientific study, why not publicly address parents’ concerns instead of trying to sell them with an advertising campaign?

Aren’t adverts for trying to convince someone to want something that they don’t really want?  Give the parents the discussion and an open forum where difficult questions are addressed with truthful and robust answers.  I suspect that people would really like to really assess the government claim that the risks of side effects of the vaccine-preventable diseases are much higher than the risks of side effects of the vaccines – instead of being “sold” on it by some PR experts.