Bovine spongiform encephalopathy

BMJ 1996; 313 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.313.7065.1146 (Published 02 November 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;313:1146

Public health officials are confused over whether to eat beef

  1. Molly Cullen,
  2. Mark Bellis,
  3. Karen Tocque
  1. Research registrar Senior lecturer in public health medicine Department of Public Health, University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 3BX
  2. Information manager Communicable Disease Surveillance Centre North West, Public Health Laboratory, Fazakerley Hospital, Liverpool L9 7AL

    EDITOR,—Helen Cohen reports considerable variation between doctors and patients in the extent to which they stopped eating beef after the announcement on 20 March of a possible link between bovine spongiform encephalopathy and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.1 She attributes this difference to varying levels of medical knowledge, educational background, and sources of information. We have carried out a similar survey of the 202 directors of public health and consultants in communicable disease control in England. Questionnaires were posted on 18 March, just before the media attention and the disparity of information were greatest.

    Of those officials …

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