By NewsDesk   @bactiman63

UK health officials report 231 confirmed cases of measles during the first quarter of the year and while this is slightly lower than the number the same period last year, Public Health England (PHE) is calling for all parents to get their children vaccinated against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR).

Image/Robert Herriman

As measles is highly infectious, anyone who has not received 2 doses of MMR vaccine is at risk, particularly unvaccinated people travelling to countries where there are currently large outbreaks of measles.

The recent measles cases are primarily occurring in under-vaccinated communities, particularly those with links to other countries with ongoing measles outbreaks. There has also been some spread into the wider population, such as those who may have missed out on the MMR vaccine when they were younger.

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In addition, PHE is reporting 795 cases of mumps this quarter.

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Seema Kennedy, Public Health Minister said:

Over 30 years ago we introduced the MMR vaccine, and since then our world-leading vaccination programme is estimated to have prevented 1.8 million painful and potentially fatal cases of measles. The vaccine was an enormous catapult for improving the health of children and young people and still is.

No child or young person should have to suffer from mumps, measles or rubella, and we must curb this recent increase in cases so we don’t see a return of horrible diseases of the past. By taking up the MMR vaccine parents and young people can prevent more cases and I would urge everybody to do so.

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