No case of diphtheria, poliomyelitis or smallpox was reported during 1970. Two possible
cases of diphtheria and one of possible smallpox were reported during the year, but subsequent
investigation by the Department's medical staff and in the laboratory confirmed alternative less
serious diagnoses in each case. It is now 21 years since the last case of diphtheria was confirmed
in this part of Middlesex whilst no case of poliomyelitis has been notified since 1960. Nevertheless,
cases of these diseases do still occur from time to time, and it is only by the maintenance of a
high level of immunisation among the population that the incidence of these potentially serious
illnesses will continue to be controlled.
The 1,256 cases of measles reported during 1970 were many more than would have been
expected even in the absence of a measles vaccination programme.
The number ot notifications
of measles received in each of the past six years illustrates the bi-annual outbreaks of measles
which have been the pattern in recent decades until the introduction of a measles vaccination
programme affected the natural history of the disease.
The number otnotifications of measles received in each of the past six years illustrates the bi-annual outbreaks of measles which have been the pattern in recent decades until the introduction of a measles vaccination programme affected the natural history of the disease.
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The large outbreaks of the disease which occurred in 1965 and 1967 were not followed by
an outbreak of such extensive proportions in 1969. It is disappointing therefore to note a much
higher incidence of the disease in 1970, as a result of an accumulation of non-immune children
who failed to receive satisfactory immunisation against the disease in 1969 either by artificial
means or by contracting the disease itself.
The number of cases of tuberculosis notified during 1970 was 55 which, as will be seen
from the table below, equals the low figure of last year. In 42 of the cases the disease was localised
in the lungs while glands were affected in 7 of the 13 non-pulmonary notifications:
New Notifications 1970
|Year||Total||Pulmonary||Non - Pulmonary|
|Under 15||Over 15||Total||Under 15||Over 15||Total|
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The Tuberculosis Visitor continues to maintain a close liaison with the two chest clinics in
the Borough. In the course of follow-up of new cases visits were made to 349 home contacts
and B.C.G. vaccination was given in 180 cases. A total of 1,009 successful domiciliary visits
were made during 1970.
A member of staff in a school within the Borough was found to have pulmonary tuberculosis
but follow-up examinations of all pupils and staff contacts showed that there had been no spread
of infection within the school.