Concern over the MMR vaccine shows no sign of going away.

It is clear many of those parents persuaded to opt for the triple jab for their children are not convinced of its safety.

They are swayed more by the balance of probability than by the absence of doubt.

Without conclusive evidence to either prove or disprove the link between the vaccine and autism, parents face an agonising decision.

They must weigh up the risk of their children contracting measles, mumps or rubella against what risk there may be in the triple jab.

In the light of conflicting information, any decision is difficult to make.

Earlier this month, we were told of the most detailed research yet undertaken which concluded the evidence against a link was positive and strong.

However, a study by Sunderland University suggests evidence of a link is strong but not absolutely conclusive.

The Government is right to point out any potential risks of MMR are significantly less than the risks if children are not immunised.

But reassurances from the Department of Health need to be backed by verifiable and incontrovertible research.

It is clear more research is needed in this area. Until a detailed, comprehensive and independent examination of this issue is undertaken, the debate will continue to rage.

The current state of confusion has to come to an end, even if this means the NHS having to spend a substantial amount of its reserves on extensive investigations.

In the eyes of the public, it will be money well spent.

There is no such thing as an exact science and doubts over the safety of MMR are likely to persist.

But the Government is duty-bound to make every effort to ensure the science is as precise as possible when it involves the health and well-being of all our children.