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From: TSS (216-119-134-120.ipset14.wt.net)
Subject: VCJD: FURTHER PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES ANNOUNCED September 21, 2004
Date: September 21, 2004 at 6:43 am PST

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: VCJD: FURTHER PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES ANNOUNCED September 21, 2004
Date: Tue, 21 Sep 2004 08:40:00 -0500
From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr."
Reply-To: Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy
To: BSE-L@UNI-KARLSRUHE.DE


##################### Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy #####################

Date: September 21, 2004 Time: 12:15

VCJD: FURTHER PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES ANNOUNCED

Selected groups of patients are this week being notified about the
results of a risk assessment exercise for blood plasma products.

The notification exercise, which relates to the possible transmission of
variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease through blood products, was announced
by Health Secretary John Reid on September 9.

To reduce the risk of onward transmission through surgery, selected
patients have been told that, because they have received certain batches
of plasma products in the past, they could be at a small increased risk
of carrying the vCJD agent.

This advice is highly precautionary and is based on recommendations made
by the expert CJD Incidents Panel.

These patients (and their healthcare professionals) are being advised
that they have in the past received batches of plasma products which
were derived from blood donated from someone who has later gone on to
develop vCJD. As a precautionary measure, a number of steps should be
taken to reduce any possible onward patient-to-patient transmission of vCJD.

People who may be affected are:
- Some people with haemophilia and other bleeding disorders. All of
these people (around 6,000) will receive letters about the background to
this exercise to keep them fully informed. The number who may be
affected directly is estimated to be around 4,000 people - A small group
of people suffering from primary immunodeficiency, estimated to number
around 50 people
- A small number of people who have been treated with large quantities
of particular plasma products for a range of conditions (e.g. secondary
immunodeficiency).

It is not possible to know exact numbers of people in any of these
groups until the patient records have been examined. This process began
on 9 September.

Although any additional risk to these people is likely to be very small,
it is necessary to take some simple steps to minimise any chance of
passing on the infection.

These steps include not donating blood, tissue or organs, and ensuring
they tell their doctors and dentists if they undergo treatment in future.

The situation has arisen because, since December last year, two
instances have been reported where vCJD is suspected to have been passed
on by blood transfusion.

Blood donated by a small number of people who went on to develop vCJD
has been traced. People who received direct, one-to-one transfusion of
'whole blood' from these donors were contacted earlier this year and
told about any additional risk they may face.

Now plasma from these same donors used to manufacture products such as
clotting agents has also been traced. Plasma products are manufactured
from pools of many thousands of donations, greatly reducing any risk of
vCJD being passed on.

A detailed risk assessment has been undertaken which has recommended the
groups listed above are notified that they might face a slightly
increased risk.

This notification process is taking place this week.

A dedicated NHS Direct helpline has been set up to answer queries about
this issue. Its number is 0845 850 9850

Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson said:

"Throughout our handling of the issue of vCJD we have adopted a highly
precautionary approach, taking a series of steps as new evidence became
available to maximise the protection of the public.

"This risk assessment continues this approach and identifies three
groups of patients who need to know that they may be at a small
increased risk of developing vCJD than the rest of the population who
ate beef during the 1980s and 1990s.

"This information will enable these people and their doctors to take the
necessary steps to minimise the risk of onward transmission of vCJD."

Health Secretary John Reid said:

"Two principles have guided my department's handling of the issue of
vCJD and its possible transmission through blood - maximum caution and
maximum openness.

"That is why, since the first report of suspected transmission via whole
blood transfusion last December, we have taken further steps to maximise
the safety of the UK's blood supply.

"We have also been open with the public, Parliament and health
professionals about each step we have taken and the expert advice behind
it. We are continuing this approach today by announcing the results of
this risk assessment exercise."

John Reid added:

"We have, however, been concerned to do everything practicable to ensure
the patients directly affected are informed by the specialist doctors
who care for them, so they can be given all appropriate information and
support.

"I know this information may be difficult to absorb, which is why we are
working with their doctors and other clinicians, to ensure they have the
information and support they need."

Notes to editors:

1. This exercise has been undertaken by the Health Protection Agency on
behalf of the Department of Health. Further relevant material has been
placed on the HPA website, www.hpa.org.uk

2. The exercise is based on the recommendations of the independent CJD
Incidents Panel. The panel drew on a risk assessment by Det Norske
Veritas Consulting, published at
http://www.dnv.com/consulting/news_consulting/RiskofInfectionfromvariantCJDinBlood.asp.

3. Previous measures taken to improve the safety of blood in relation to
vCJD include the following:
- Since 1998, plasma derivatives, such as clotting factors, have been
prepared from plasma imported from the USA.
- Since October 1999, white blood cells (which may carry a significant
risk of transmitting vCJD) have been removed from all blood used for
transfusion.
- In August 2002 we announced that fresh frozen plasma for treating
babies and young children born after 1 January 1996 would be obtained
form the USA.
- On 16 December 2002, the Department of Health completed its purchase
of the largest remaining independent US plasma collector, Life Resources
Incorporated. This secures long-term supplies of non-UK blood plasma for
the benefit of NHS patients.
- In April 2004, individuals who had themselves received a transfusion
of whole blood components since January 1980 were excluded from donating
blood.
- The exclusion criteria for blood donation was extended on 2nd August
2004 to include two new groups, who have received transfusions of whole
blood components since 1980:
- Previously transfused apheresis donors; and
- Donors who were unsure if they had previously had a blood transfusion

http://www.wired-gov.net/WGLaunch.aspx?ARTCL=26937

12:05pm (UK)
Vcjd: Further Precautionary Measures Announced

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH News Release (2004/0341) issued by the Government
News Network on 21 September 2004

Selected groups of patients are this week being notified about the
results of a risk assessment exercise for blood plasma products.

The notification exercise, which relates to the possible transmission of
variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease through blood products, was announced
by Health Secretary John Reid on September 9.

To reduce the risk of onward transmission through surgery, selected
patients have been told that, because they have received certain batches
of plasma products in the past, they could be at a small increased risk
of carrying the vCJD agent.

snip...

http://news.scotsman.com/latest.cfm?id=3526804


120 at 'high risk' of CJD

The Scotsman Tue, 21 Sep 2004 5:27 AM PDT
ABOUT 120 Scots are to be told they are at "high risk" of having
contracted the human form of mad cow disease after being treated with
infected blood products.

http://news.scotsman.com/scotland.cfm?id=1108232004


British patients warned over vCJD

RTÉ News Tue, 21 Sep 2004 4:10 AM PDT
A report published in Britain today says vCJD, the human form of
so-called mad cow disease, may be transmitted in blood products and
blood transfusions. The Irish Blood Transfusion Service is preparing to
respond to the report.

http://www.rte.ie/news/2004/0921/cjd.html

TSS

################# BSE-L-subscribe-request@uni-karlsruhe.de #################





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