Panic and fear over new measles outbreak
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Panic and fear over new measles outbreak

Panic and fear over new measles outbreak

THOUSANDS of children are in ­danger of catching measles because their parents still refuse to let them have proper vaccinations.

By: Jo Wiley

Published: Sat, November 9, 2013

Health chiefs have warned Britain is on the brink of a second major ­epidemic just four months after the previous outbreak which claimed one life and more than 1,200 victims.

The virus is highly contagious. Experts say one child with measles sitting in a classroom for just an hour will pass it on to at least 70 per cent of other pupils who are not vaccinated.

Cases have once again soared in Swansea, the area which was hit earlier this year.

measles, mmr, health, nhs, vaccines, wales, swansea, measles, mumps, rubellaHealth chiefs in Wales have warned parents to give their children the MMR booster jab [GETTY]

To prevent this outbreak spreading even further, it’s crucial that unvaccinated children and young people receive two doses of MMR urgently

Dr Jorg Hoffmann

Health chiefs in Wales warned last month that a renewed flare-up was likely to spread rapidly unless children have the vital secondary measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) booster jab.

At that point, the total stood at 13 cases but this has already risen to 36.

“Parents and young people should not underestimate how serious ­measles can be and how quickly it can spread,” said Dr Jorg Hoffmann, ­Public Health Wales consultant in communicable disease control.

“To prevent this outbreak spreading even further, it’s crucial that unvaccinated children and young people receive two doses of MMR urgently and that those with symptoms do not attend school.” The ­epidemic which swept the greater Swansea area earlier this year triggered a huge vaccination programme.

While many children got their first dose of the MMR injection, a significant number failed to get a booster jab within a month.

Measles can be fatal.

Although more than 70,000 catch-up MMR jabs were given across Wales during the epidemic, 30,000 children and young people aged from 10 to 18 remain unprotected.

Health officials emphasised that the only protection against the infection is two doses of the MMR jab.

All cases in the new outbreak, affecting four schools, date from the start of October. Several of the new cases have been spread as a result of pupils attending school already with the symptoms of measles.

Continue reading at Panic and fear over new measles outbreak | Health | News | Daily Express.

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