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Mum’s consent for MMR?

(10 Posts)
gourd Tue 04-Mar-14 11:03:32

After we had to rearrange the MMR and 4-in-1 pre-school booster for DD due to her illness, the 2nd appointment also did not occur, partly due to child’s illness yet again, but nurse also asked for Mother’s consent (my partner took child for immunisation). Is this common practice?

If so, why were we not informed that this written consent was required when the initial appointment letter and leaflet (which does not mention Mother’s written consent being required) came through the door addressed to “parent/guardian of XXX” (i.e. either of us)? Why on calling to book a more suitable timeslot, was I also not informed of this at that point? Why were we then not informed on calling to change timeslots for the 2nd time, due to child’s high temperature on the day (having rung the nurse, who said she could not give the live vaccine to a child with a high temp)?

This is THREE points of contact where we could have been told we needed to give Mother’s consent in writing, if not present! Luckily partner sneaked out of work early to take child rather than having to take a day off work but we would have been even more cross if this had been the case.

He was also told, on enquiring how the nurse would actually know who the Mother of the child was “kids look like their Mums” so this appears to be a complete nonsense, tick box exercise without any actual ID checks. A woman taking a child to be immunised could obviously be a cousin, aunt, sister, grandparent or indeed completely unrelated to the child at all. And, apparently the same is not the case for Fathers, who do not have to give their consent in writing if not present – this seems completely sexist and ridiculous to me. I am now left with the impression that the NHS simply makes it up as they go along….

Anyone else had this experience?

ISeeYouShiverWithAntici Tue 04-Mar-14 11:07:39

No. My husband has never had a problem with being the parent taking our children to anything medical or for any jabs or anything. People have asked or sometimes simply assumed he is the father and have treated him accordingly.

Have you asked them to explain it? Set out as you have here? what did they say? And particularly if "looking like the mother" is a formal criteria?

bakingtins Tue 04-Mar-14 11:10:00

That doesn't sound right at all. If Father has parental responsibility he should equally be able to consent. I've never been asked to consent in writing for a vaccination, only verbally but it's always me (mum) who gets the shit job of taking them
I'd complain - either they need both parents' consent in writing in which case you should be informed of this from the start, or verbal consent of the parent attending the appointment is fine, in which case either parent can equally give that consent.

procrastinatingagain Tue 04-Mar-14 11:13:35

I seem to remember being told that only I, the mother, could consent to vaccinations, but I thought they only ask you once at the first vaccinations, and then anyone can take the child to the subsequent appointments.

ISeeYouShiverWithAntici Tue 04-Mar-14 11:15:07

My husband always did the holding down for jabs. I was always a wimp. grin as far as I know, nobody ever even asked where I was, much less was it ok with me.

TheGirlFromIpanema Tue 04-Mar-14 11:27:18

My exP (not dd's father) took her and ds to all of their vaccinations and never heard a murmur about my consent.

Are you two fathers? Do you think they were being bigoted twats if so? Sounds very odd.

UriGeller Tue 04-Mar-14 11:30:17

DP did DD's last jabs (not personally but took her) nurse asked if DP had parental responsibility, that's all. He said yes, she did jabs.

gourd Tue 04-Mar-14 11:32:57

Thanks - tho that’s not very conclusive... Is it law? If it is (then it is massively sexist and ridiculous), then why weren't we told this from the outset? The child looking like Mother criteria is completely stupid and smacks of box ticking if indeed it is the law that Mothers must give consent. Either way I will write to the PCT and complain that a) we were not told that a Mother must give consent to vacconations (as opposed to a Father) from the outset and b) if indeed Mother’s consent is required, then a nurse looking at the facial characteristics of a child and a woman accompanying a child as a criteria for giving the vaccinations or not is clearly not sufficient.

procrastinatingagain Tue 04-Mar-14 11:47:20

There are only certain persons who are legally permitted to give consent for a child (for example for vaccination) This consent can be written or verbal.
These people are;
The child’s birth mother.
Both the child’s parents IF they were married to eachother at the time of conception or birth AND are still married to eachother at time of consultation.
An unmarried genetic father who is present at the child’s registration and who’s name is on the birth certificate (from 1st December 2003 only, before that date this does not apply)
An unmarried genetic father who has acquired parental responsibility via a court order or a parental responsibility order.
A genetic father who has married the mother after the birth of the child and is still married to her.
The child’s legally appointed guardian
A person who has been given a residence order by a court regarding the child.
A local authority designated to have a care order for the child by a court
A local authority or anyone having an emergency protection order in respect of a child.
Grandparents, fosterparents and childminders can not give consent unless they hold a legally binding court order as above.
NB A child’s father who is not married to the mother at the time of birth or conception and who has not married her subsequently can not in law give legally binding consent for the child unless he has obtained a parental responsibility order via the court system (or unless his name is on the birth certificate from 1/12/2003)
If a person who can give legally binding consent is unable accompany a child to an appointment they may write a letter giving consent for the named procedure/immunisation for the child and send this, signed, with the child and carer to the appointment.
copied from this website

gourd Tue 04-Mar-14 12:05:44

This is Child's father then - An unmarried genetic father who is present at the child’s registration and who’s name is on the birth certificate (from 1st December 2003 only, before that date this does not apply)

So in this case the nurse wasnt correct? Can he just take child's birth certificate (And red book) to the appointment to prove his ID/Father status?

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