SOME Muslim families say they are unsure whether to let their children get the latest flu vaccine due to its gelatine contents.

Parents in Blackburn have expressed their uncertainty about the vaccine, which contains pork gelatine.

This has led to various debates and opinions, with Darwen Health Care GP Dr Pervez Muzafer warning parents that the vaccine is important.

There is also an injectable vaccine now available for children if they do not wish to have the nasal spray.

Dr Muzafer said: “Vaccines are a very important part to fight the virus and recently we have been injecting all our elderly people who have chronic diseases. But kids are not being vaccinated as much as we want them to be.

“The reason is, for our Muslim community, it is the concern regarding gelatine in the nasal spray.

“This year we have an injection vaccine for children as well.

“Just to clarify the nasal spray does have pork gelatine in it, but it goes through so many processes that at the end the pig DNA is undetectable.”

Some parents, such as radiographer Nazia Khan from Blackburn, are still unsure.

She said: “To be honest I don’t want my children to have the flu vaccine regardless of the pork gelatine, even though I am a health care professional I wouldn’t give it them.

“However, I do take it myself due to being asthmatic so if this was the case for the kids I would probably give them the vaccine, but thankfully I don’t need to make that choice.

“I would have to do my research as to, is it allowed in Islam? I feel if it’s on medical grounds then we would be allowed but I’m not entirely sure.”

Another parent from Blackburn, who did not wish to be named, said: “I won’t give my kids the flu vaccine because it has something which we are not allowed to have.

“I don’t think anyone is clear on it and although I want them to be safe, I wish there wasn’t so many divided opinions.

“How can I give them something when it could not be permissible?”

A spokesman for the Lancashire Council of Mosques, said: “We have been working with Public Health England on this, as this is an issue which comes up every year.

“We will leave it to the discretion of parents whether they want to give the vaccine to them or wait until the injectable one is out.”