'The Health Secretary is reportedly considering making child immunisations compulsory as he accused anti-vaccination campaigners of having 'blood on their hands', sparking fury online.
According to The Times, Matt Hancock said he was 'completely open to all options' in how to increase vaccination rates, including by making them mandatory.
It comes after figures released by Unicef last week showed that more than half a million children in the UK were unvaccinated against measles between 2010 and 2017.
Mr Hancock told the paper: 'The evidence is really clear that vaccination is good for you and your children and, critically, protects people who can't be vaccinated for medical reasons.
'Those who have promoted the anti-vaccination myth are morally reprehensible, deeply irresponsible and have blood on their hands.'
The Health Secretary has also previously said he 'wouldn't rule out anything' when asked whether unvaccinated children should be banned from schools.
'I wouldn't rule out anything but I don't think we're there yet,' he told Talk Radio last week.
'In America they tried to do this and the courts stopped them so it can be complicated, but really it's people's responsibility as a parent to do the right thing - the right thing for their own children as well as, of course, the right of the community that everybody lives in.'
Earlier this week, a Labour MP said the Government should look at making failure to immunise children a 'criminal offence'.
During a debate in the Commons to mark World Immunisation Week, Paul Sweeney warned the 'creeping cynicism' around the safety of vaccinations was a 'real national emergency'.
The proposal has been met with fury online with some even likening the introduction of a compulsory vaccine to 'Nazi Germany'.'
Read more: Health secretary's 'plan for mandatory child vaccinations' sparks anti-vax fury as parents brand move 'like Nazi Germany'
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