Measles, mumps, and rubella are highly infectious illnesses that can easily spread between unvaccinated people. The complications from these diseases can be life changing. It’s more important than ever to keep your child safe by getting them vaccinated as cases of measles have risen across the globe in recent years, including in England.
If unvaccinated nine out of ten children in a classroom will catch measles from an infected classmate. One in five children will require a hospital visit and one in fifteen children will have complications from being unwell with measles, such as meningitis and sepsis.
The MMR vaccine is one of the most studied vaccines and millions of doses are given every year. This means the MMR vaccine is safe to be given to your child.
Two doses of MMR vaccine should provide long lasting protection. The first dose is given after your child’s first birthday. The second dose is given at 3 years 4 months.
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NHS facts about measles:
- Measles cases are rising. There is no specific treatment for measles and the MMR vaccination gives the best possible protection against illness.
- Between 1 January and 30 June there have been 128 cases of measles, compared to 54 cases in the whole of 2022, with 66 per cent of the cases detected in London although cases have been seen in all regions.
- Just one person with measles can infect nine out of ten people who have not had the MMR vaccination.
- Measles is more than just a rash, in some cases it can lead to meningitis and sepsis, causing real risk to life.
- 1 in 5 cases of measles cases requires a hospital visit
- Since the measles vaccine was introduced in the 1960s over 20 million cases have been avoided, saving over 4,500 lives.
- The Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine is safe and has been used since the early 1980s.
- Measles is completely preventable with the MMR vaccine. Two doses provide over 99% protection.
- Young children are offered one MMR vaccine after their first birthday and the second before they start school, usually at around 3 years and 4 months. This is because two doses of the MMR vaccine provides the best possible protection against measles, as well as mumps and rubella.
- 95% MMR vaccination uptake, the target set by the WHO, is enough to create herd immunity, protecting those who are not able to be vaccinated, such as babies under one years old, and stop measles circulating
- Measles is highly infectious respiratory infection and can be passed on up to four days before a rash appears.
- The WHO declared measles as one of the world’s most contagious diseases