The names of drug manufacturers who produce products from bovine materials have been quashed by the UK inquiry into the handling of the BSE epidemic. Their identity is protected by confidentiality clauses in the Medicines Act. Three products could have been made using potentially dangerous materia from infected cattle: a skin test for tuberculosis, a measles vaccine and a vaccine to prevent diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough.
Many past medical disasters could have been prevented or lessened if the health community had been more vigilant about alerting authorities. Doctors, nurses, dentists and other are the first to know when a drug or medical device does not perform as it should. The sooner they report it, the faster the agency can take corrective action.