MMR Vaccination Call Following High Numbers Of Cases
Outbreaks of measles and mumps prompt Public Health England to call for anyone who is eligible to get vaccinated.
In England, 301 new measles infections were confirmed in the period between April and June 2019 compared to 231 in the first quarter of 2019. Cases were reported in all regions except the North East. Most cases (266) were in unvaccinated individuals aged 15 years and over.
Continuing the increase seen between January and March, 2,028 cases of mumps were also confirmed in the second quarter of 2019, compared to 795 last quarter. The increase in mumps has been mostly driven by outbreaks in university students. Cases were reported across England, predominantly in young adults aged 15 to 34 years.
Measles is easy to catch and can kill.
Dr Mary Ramsay, Head of Immunisation at Public Health England (PHE) said:
"Although it is normal to see mumps outbreaks in universities every few years, we are seeing a significant number of cases, the highest quarterly figure since 2009.
"Coupled with the continued measles outbreaks these figures clearly demonstrate the need for sustained high vaccination rates.
"We’re urging parents and their children, no matter how old they are, to check they’ve had 2 doses of MMR. Measles is easy to catch and can kill. Vaccines are there to stop the spread of disease and save lives.
"It’s never too late to protect yourself and others."
Nearly half of the mumps cases this quarter were unvaccinated. While the mumps component of the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine is highly effective at protecting young children, immunity can reduce over time. Therefore, older teenagers and adults who received two doses of MMR in childhood can still get mumps although this is generally mild compared to those who are unvaccinated.
One new case of rubella re-infection in a pregnant woman was also reported.
MMR Vaccination Call Following High Numbers Of Cases, 30th August 2019, 15:55 PM