(2) whether family members of those who have died of new variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) are encouraged to take a blood screening test for vCJD; and if he will make a statement;
(3) if he will commission a prevalence study of EP-vCJD tests in the UK; and if he will make a statement;
(4) if he will consider the introduction of EP-vCJD tests in routine blood donations; and if he will make a statement.
At present, there is no validated test for variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) on the market although the technology is under development. The expert Advisory Committee on the Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs will assess options for further vCJD risk reduction measures, including prion filtration technology and screening tests, as further information becomes available, and will advise on their use. If a suitable vCJD blood screening test becomes available, the offer of such a test to individuals will be for agreement between the individual and their clinician.
The Department will consider the use of validated tests for ascertaining the population prevalence of vCJD as they become available.