Home > General Politics > Is Liz Jones’ private GP competent to vaccinate?

Is Liz Jones’ private GP competent to vaccinate?

Liz Jones’ article in the Sunday Mail about her being ‘let down’ by the NHS because she couldn’t get her pre-Somalia (WTF?) vaccinations done at the drop of a hat is so startling in its lack of self-awareness that it’s very hard to believe it’s not self-parody. 

On the other hand, it is Liz Jones.

It being Liz Jones, I wouldn’t normally bother with comment.  She’s really not worth it.  But this bit of her article is (unbeknownst to Ms Jones) interesting:

In order to obtain a visa, I am required to be inoculated against hepatitis A and B, yellow fever, typhoid, diphtheria, tetanus, polio and so on. On Thursday, I called my GP, a private GP, in London’s Sloane Street.

‘Yes, Miss Jones, come in any time.’ And so I did. But my doctor could only give me the ‘live’ vaccine, yellow fever; the other jabs would have to be done the following day (my emphasis).

It’s interesting because, if true (and if my interpretation is correct), it looks like Ms Jones’ private GP may be in need of some training.

There may well be a lay perception that live vaccines like Yellow Fever cannot be given on the same day as other ‘jabs’, but it is not true. 

The Department of Health’s ‘Green Book’ on ‘Immunisation against infectious disease’ (Chapter 35 on Yellow Fever)  is quite clear:

Yellow fever vaccine can be given at the same time as other inactivated and live vaccines. The vaccines should be given at separate sites, preferably in a different limb. If given in the same limb, they should be given at least 2.5cm apart (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2003).

Even more importantly, the way in which antibodies are stimulated by live vaccines means that all live vaccines (including cholera and polio) SHOULD be given on the same day so as not to render them less effective. As this GP training website makes clear:

Live vaccines (Polio and Yellow Fever), must be given either together or three weeks apart.

If we assume that her GP, based as s/he is in Sloane Street, routinely provides vaccinations for (rich) overseas travellers, then there must be at least some suspicion that s/he has been advising many people poorly on when they can or can’t have their jabs, to the extent that s/he may be endangering her/his patients’ health.

I wish Ms Jones no physical harm, however repulsive her views. My advice to her is that she might be better enrolling with an NHS GP who, with the appropriate clinical and training networks provided by the NHS, may be more likely to be clinically up to date than a Sloane Street doctor.

Categories: General Politics
  1. am
    July 31, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    interesting. It does bring to mind a different question though – what if she is simply making it up?

  2. Katz
    July 31, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Aren’t the Somalians suffering enough without having to put up with that awful dame?

  3. July 31, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    In some parts of the NHS, only some providers can do Yellow Fever vaccs. And even then, not just like that. They don’t always have stock to be able to do it “just like that”. The expectation that you can get them “at the drop of a hat” is ridiculous. Some people are simply spoilt.

  4. tim f
    July 31, 2011 at 10:39 pm

    Is it even true that you require a yellow fever vaccination to get a visa to Somalia? I’d question a) whether you need one if you’re not arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission, and b) whether it is necessary to obtain a visa, rather than being technically required (but not always asked for) when crossing the border

  5. paulinlancs
    August 1, 2011 at 10:54 am

    am and tim F: Yes, I don’t think we can discount the idea that some or all of this is simply made up.

    Can we surmise that either the private GP’s not very good at her/his job (which isn’t v good for the point of the story), or Liz Jones is a liar.

  6. August 1, 2011 at 11:06 am

    To get these injections your given a quick medical or at least asked a number of questions and if the doctor believes you health is not at it’s best they can split the injection inoculations into different days.

    But hell why spoil a good story in the Sunday Heil

  7. August 1, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    I’ve just discovered the same Liz Jones penned an article called “I’ve never liked the homeless – they’re smelly and scary.” She tries to make her faux defence at the end, but even if she has changed her mind, why would you hold such ridiculous opinion to begin with?

    ( http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1238839/Ive-liked-homeless–theyre-smelly-scary-So-Christmas-shift-shelter-change-mind.html )

  8. simon watts
    August 1, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    Liz Jones is a nutcase, she should be sectioned immediately. Her piece in the Mail on Sunday regarding vaccination just shows how deluded this stupid woman is.

  9. Dr C Paterson
    August 2, 2011 at 9:00 am

    I was under the impression that Yellow fever can only be given at recognised yelow fever centres and I am sure that LJ pvt Gp rooms would not be such. The whole article is full of inacurracies.Made up oops sorry written for a deadline

  10. Prize Winner
    August 2, 2011 at 11:00 am

    Liz Jones is a figment of the writer’s own deluded imagination. She doesn’t exist and if she did she would surely have been sectioned by now.

  11. paulinlancs
    August 2, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Dr C @ 9: I did in fact check out whether there were any Sloane St surgeries registered as YF vaccination centres, and there are a couple

    See http://www.nathnac.org/YellowFeverCentres.aspx?SQ=SW1&comingfrom=travel&PageNumber=4

    Of course from this we can, assuming she’s telling the truth about the YF jab, narrow her actual GP down pretty well, and then ask the relevant questions about that GP’s competence direct. But heh, I’m not the GMC/CQC.

    I might drop them a whistleblower, though…….unless you want to.

  12. 20goto10
    August 5, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    The private GP might be the private GP who writes for the Daily Hate Mail, Martin Scurr. If that’s the case then it wouldn’t surprise me at all, having worked alongside him in the past.

  13. Ruth
    August 6, 2011 at 9:31 pm

    Having the vaccines 1 day before traveling is a total waste of time, as generally they take at least 2 weeks before they take full effect. So she might as well not of bothered. Why didnt she just attend a travel clinic and pay for all her jabs, seeing as she is so rich. Why did she leave it until the day before leaving before sorting these things out, as they are so important. Although its true that giving an injection only takes a few seconds, the documentation that has to be completed for each vaccine given does make the procedure much longer than it seems, plus nurses have the responsibility to discuss other risk factors involved with traveling abroad, not just the giving of an injection. Why does the people of Somalia need a fashion writer??? I think the real journalists are capable of reporting whats happening out there without her input. She obviously hasn’t got a clue about real life. She should be sacked, she is a disgrace

  14. simon watts
    September 2, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    I don’t read her articles any more. She is a frustrated nutjob in dire need of a man or maybe a woman. Who knows who cares!

  1. July 2, 2012 at 12:55 pm

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