1. ITV Report

Measles outbreak confirmed in Leeds

Overall risk in UK is low Credit: Public Health England

Public Health England has announced 28 confirmed cases of measles in Leeds, with outbreaks also in four other areas of the country.

There are 18 confirmed cases in Liverpool, seven in Surrey and Sussex, four in Manchester and 13 in Birmingham. All of the cases have been reported in children and adults who have not received 2 doses of the MMR vaccine.

In Leeds, twelve of the cases were confirmed in just the last two weeks.

Measles is a highly infectious viral illness that can be very unpleasant and can sometimes lead to serious complications. Children and young people who have not received 2 doses of MMR vaccine are at risk.

The UK recently achieved WHO measles elimination status and so the overall risk of measles to the UK population is low. However, unvaccinated people travelling to Romania and Italy, where there are currently large outbreaks of measles, are at particularly high risk.

PHE says anyone planning to travel to Europe over the Christmas period should seek advice and that anyone who is not sure if they are fully vaccinated should check with their GP practice.

The measles outbreaks we are currently seeing in England are linked to ongoing large outbreaks in Europe. People who have recently travelled, or are planning to travel to Romania, Italy and Germany and have not had 2 doses of the MMR vaccine are particularly at risk.

This serves as an important reminder for parents to take up the offer of MMR vaccination for their children at 1 year of age and as a pre-school booster at 3 years and 4 months of age. Children and young adults who missed out on their MMR vaccine in the past or are unsure if they had 2 doses should contact their GP practice to catch-up.

– Dr Mary Ramsay, Head of Immunisation at PHE