Warning to parents as measles outbreak hits Yorkshire

Measles outbreak spreads across Britain with over 100 confirmed cases

A measles outbreak has now affected 122 people in the UK, Public Health England (PHE) has confirmed.

More than 50 cases were reported in the United Kingdom since the middle of December.

Telephone your GP so that they can see you at a time/place when no one else is there (to avoid infecting others).

Measles is highly contagious disease that can be prevented by having the vaccination, offered by the NHS as a single measles, mumps and rubella jab.

Irish parents are being urged to check their children's MMR vaccinations are up to date, as fears grow that a measles outbreak in the United Kingdom could spread to Ireland. The most distinctive symptom, however, is a red-brown rash that usually appears on the neck before spreading.

Anyone who might suspect they have the infection is advised to stay at home and call their GP or NHS 111.

The illness starts with cold-like symptoms, but develops into a measles rash after a few days.

The spike in cases, which affects five areas, is linked to ongoing outbreaks in Europe, Public Health England says.

As of 9 January, PHE said there have been 34 cases in West Yorkshire, 29 cases in Cheshire and Liverpool, 32 cases in the West Midlands, 20 cases in Surrey and 7 cases in Greater Manchester.

This comes after PHE issued a similar warning last month when there were 91 confirmed cases in England. If your child has missed theirs, the HSE advises that you can contact your GP to get the age appropriate dose.

Unvaccinated people travelling to Romania and Italy, where there are now large outbreaks of measles, are at particularly high risk. It can lead to serious complications, including pneumonia.

"This is a very serious disease and can have very serious consequences and it is also a highly infectious disease".

Dr Ramsay said the overall risk to people in the United Kingdom is low.

This means the number of cases in the United Kingdom across a period of at least three years was low enough to prevent the disease spreading among the general population.

Experts are urging parents to immunise their children.

People most at risk of catching measles are those haven't had the infection in the past or are not fully vaccinated with 2 doses of MMR vaccine, such as babies under 12 months and those with weakened immune systems.

Young people who have not received two doses of MMR vaccine are at risk from contracting the highly infectious viral illness that, in some cases, can lead to serious complications, such as deafness, pneumonia and blindness.

"I would appeal to any parents who have not yet had their children vaccinated to get them protected as soon as possible through their GP".

"We'd also encourage people to ensure they are up to date with their MMR vaccine before travelling to countries with ongoing measles outbreaks".

PHE says cases in England appear to be stabilising.

The overall risk in the United Kingdom is still low, but outbreaks can happen any time.



Other news