Sorry about frequency of my posting here – but I live in a drought in the wettest part of the United Kingdom. BBC doing everything possible to avoid holding the Minister directly responsible (IRA terrorist Conor Murphy) to account so instead ……let’s talk about the great flu epidemic which is killing millions as I write.
Hang on – killing 12 people. Anyway, the BBC meme has the evil Coalition (excepting Saint Vince and Saint Simon of Hughes)  to blame because it cut the wonderfully informative TV ad campaign advising people to..erm..exercise basic hygiene. I was contacted by a Biased BBC reader who shared the following today;

“On Tuesday this week (the 28th December) my wife made a comment on the BBC News website regarding the flu jab. As a pregnant woman she qualified to have the flu jab and following the issue being discussed on BBC Breakfast on Monday the 20th, she had the jab.  

Her comment to the BBC site was to the effect that despite BBC news announcing that the NHS was contacting “at risk” groups to advise them to have the flu jab, she had not received any such advice, despite seeing both doctor and midwife regularly for the past 4 months.

Not a big deal but she had her say. 

Less than an hour after making the comment, my wife was contacted by the BBC asking for an interview for the evening news. 

However during a later phone conversation with the BBC, it became clear that my wife was being asked to blame the absence of flu jab advertising for not getting the jab until the previous week.

When my wife made the specific point that she had commented to refute the assertion that the NHS were contacting everybody at risk, as her own (anecdotal) evidence contradicted this, the BBC researcher told her that she could “say that the lack of advertising had compounded this”.

My wife then said she would not have time to do the interview and rang off.”

Need I say more? My thanks to the reader and, as they say, impartiality is in their genes. 
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  1. David Jones says:

    That is awful.


  2. Sres says:

    What it boils down to is anyway that they can beat down the coalition they will.

    What I find laughable is their headlines on the website bear no resemblance to the article.

    Headline vs paragraph 3


  3. Guest Who says:

    “The BBC researcher told her that she could “say that the lack of advertising had compounded this”.

    A clearer example of dropping any pretence of reporting over creating narrative ‘views as news’ would be hard to imagine.

    The country is being misled and misdirected by a small cabal who concoct their version of ‘truth’ in the producer/researcher pre-briefing beforehand, and the edit suite afterwards.

    Aber immer anhören Auntie!  



  4. Jim says:

    I’m so glad someone else has spotted this ridiculous BBC infatuation with a ‘pending’ flu pandemic. The Today programme earlier in the week was ridiculous. The narrative of the story was that we’re all in for a big flu outbreak (and I’m sure the BBC wil be blamign the coalition) except that te one or two interviewees all said there was nothing to worry about. Carrying on regardless, the BBC part of the piece continued with pending armageddon. The BBC narrative was completely out of step with what the interviewees were saying, and it isn’t the first time I’ve commented on similar naked editorial bias.

    A few days later the flu meme is continuing on the BBC website. Its almost as if there’s an editors meeting every month that says “right, this month we’re going to go big on flu” regardless of whether there’s any major flu story. We then end up with it all over every BBC news channel.

    It would be nice if the BBC reported news that actually happened, rather than news they want to have happened.


    • Sres says:

      Exactly, they’re deciding on their agenda what we see.  Take this morning’s Breakfast BBC editorial on how hot it is in Australia, cut to a panda being hosed down and eating an iced pineapple.  Then a tenuous link to AGW by pointing out it’s new years eve!!!

      I assume that most people know that in Australia it’s the height of their summer and temperatures of 35-40 degrees is nothing unusual…


      • hippiepooter says:

        Not to mention that on the penultimate day of cricket in the 4th Ashes Test everyone was commenting upon how cold it was!


  5. Alex says:

    unfortunately miscarriage is very common (between 1in4 and 1in5 of women following a postive pregnancy test), and it is rare for a cause to be identified.  In the search for answers it is tempting to blame anything possible, including a recent vaccination. 

    Women are strongly advised to avoid “live” vaccines, such as yellow fever, because of the risk of infection but this is not a feasible risk with the seasonal flu or last year’s pandemic flu vaccination.  The data is collected centerally and there was no increase in miscarriage rates associated with the vaccination programmes.  Note I am not saying that there is no risk – it is impossible to definitively state that – but that the evidence is not there (and it has been looked for very carefully).  Contrast the risk of infection – we know that this causes significant maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality.

    If we are using the power of anecdote, I can say that I have never seen so many very unwell women with viruses before last year.  My hospital was extremely lucky not to have any maternal deaths last year but we had significant numbers on ITU / requiring oxygen on the wards / and some needing to be transferred to the ECMO unit in Leicester.  This was unprecedented and I am beginning to see the same again this winter.

    If any of your family or friends are pregnant I would strongly urge them to get a flu vaccination.  Yes there will be adverse effects (sore arm, feeling unwell for a few days, very rare risk of severe allergic reaction) but the current information suggests that this is much much safer than the risks of developing H1N1 flu. 


  6. Millie Tant says:

    That is interesting and all very well, but there could be reasons why some individuals should not have the vaccination, so shouldn’t the advice be to consult their GP as to whether it is advisable for them to have it? 


    • Alex says:

      Millie, anyone who administers a vaccination checks for possible contraindications (proven / strongly supported allergy to vaccine component, sensitivity to eggs / recent moderate or severe illness / previous Guillan-Barre) before giving the jab.  In pregnancy (I work in obstetrics so this is the one I know about), the number of women who cannot receive the vaccine is very small. 
      I was being lazy in the post above – advise pregnant friends to discuss with their GP / obstetrician / midwife / practice nurse but we would suggest that most pregnant women have the jab.


  7. hippiepooter says:

    DV, if the Tory Party had a clue or the gumption they’d be very keen to contact your reader’s wife to highlight this blatant example of BBC bias.  Unfortunately it would require a new political party to have what it takes to do something so necessary and obvious for the sake of our democracy.