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Bristol sees widespread outbreak of measles as young adults missed out on vaccinations when they were younger

The city has seen 86 confirmed cases of measles since January. Credit: NHS Choices

Bristol has seen a huge outbreak of measles this year, prompting the Council to remind parents about the importance of the MMR vaccine.

Since January 2018, the city has seen 86 confirmed cases. They have also seen 20 probable cases.

In the same period in 2017, the city saw just two cases of the disease.

One reason for the rise in cases is young adults who missed out on vaccinations when they were younger.

86
Confirmed cases of measles in Bristol since January 2018
2
Confirmed cases of measles in Bristol, January 2017 - August 2017

Bristol City Council - along with Public Health England - are urging parents to make sure children starting school in September have had two doses of MMR.

The vaccine protects against Measles, Mumps and Rubella.

Unfortunately, we know that the school environment provides a perfect place for infections to circulate and spread. This is why we are asking parents to add the MMR vaccine to their back to school lists.

– Dominic Mellon, Consultant in Communicable Disease Control for Public Health England South West

If you can't remember if your child has had the vaccinations or not, you can contact your GP who will be able to check your child's records.

If you are young adult who isn't sure whether you had the vaccinations or not, you are also advised to ask your GP.

A catch up vaccine can then easily be arranged.

The Council are reminding parents that their children should have had two doses of the MMR vaccine before starting school in September. Credit: PA Images

Measles signs and symptoms:

  • Cold-like symptoms including runny nose, sneezing and a cough.
  • Sore, red eyes.
  • High temperature (fever).
  • A red-brown blotchy rash, usually starts on the head or neck.

For more information about the disease, visit:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/measles/

For information about the MMR vaccine, visit:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/mmr-vaccine/

If you suspect measles, call your GP immediately to be assessed and if it is measles stay at home until 5 days after rash has appeared.

Call ahead before attending your GP, A&E or any other health care setting so that they make arrangements to prevent you spreading the infection to others.