Between 1 January and 20 April 2023, there have been 49 cases of measles compared to 54 cases in the whole of 2022. Most of the cases have been in London, although there have been cases picked up across the country and some are linked to travel abroad.
Measles is a highly infectious disease that can lead to serious problems such as pneumonia, meningitis, and on rare occasions, long-term disability or death. Symptoms include a high fever, sore red watery eyes and a blotchy red-brown rash, and it is particularly easy to catch in environments when in close contact with others.
Vaccines are our best line of defence against diseases like measles, mumps and rubella and help stop outbreaks occurring in the community. However, in recent years the number of children vaccinated against these diseases has fallen.
We are calling on all parents and guardians to make sure their children are up to date with their 2 MMR doses. It’s never too late to catch up, and people can get the MMR vaccine for free on the NHS whatever their age.