Public Health England is advising the public to ensure they have had 2 doses of MMR vaccine after outbreaks of measles are confirmed across England.
Between 1 January 2018 and 31 October 2018, there have been 913 laboratory-confirmed measles cases in England. This steep rise in cases (when compared to 259 lab-confirmed measles cases in 2017), was associated with outbreaks linked to importations from Europe that have led to some limited spread in the community, particularly teenagers and young adults who missed out on their MMR vaccine when they were younger.
The increase in measles circulation is mainly associated with travel to and from Europe where there are large ongoing measles outbreaks.
Young people and adults aged 15 and over who missed out on MMR vaccine when they were younger and some under-vaccinated communities have been particularly affected. Measles is a highly infectious viral illness that can sometimes lead to serious complications and can be fatal in very rare cases.
Anyone who has not received 2 doses of MMR vaccine is at risk, but young people in environments with close mixing such as festivals are more at risk, as well as unvaccinated people. Anyone planning to travel to Europe should check NaTHNaC travel health advice.
The MMR vaccine is available to all adults and children who are not up to date with their two doses. Anyone who is not sure if they are fully vaccinated should check with their GP practice who can advise them.
More information is available from the following websites: