Increase in measles cases across north central London

Increase in measles cases across north central London

17 May 2024

Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect you and your loved ones from measles.

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Measles is one of the most infectious viral infections we know of, causing people to feel very unwell and have symptoms like a rash, a fever, a cough, and a runny nose.
The rash can be harder to see on some skin colours. Find more information on spotting measles on different skin colours here.
Research shows that 1 in 5 people with measles will be admitted to hospital, and one in 15 children who have measles will go on to have later complications with their health.
These complications include hearing loss, blindness, pneumonia, encephalitis (which is swelling of the brain), brain damage, and in very serious cases, death.
And if you're pregnant, measles can cause premature birth, miscarriage or still birth.
The measles vaccine is called the MMR vaccine.  This stands for measles, mumps and rubella. So when you get the MMR vaccine, you're actually getting a layer of protection for three different illnesses.
If you arenít vaccinated against the measles infection, or if a child you care for has not, please take a moment now to read the information below about the MMR vaccine.

About the vaccine:

The MMR vaccine is recommended for all babies and young children, but older children and adults can have it too if they were not vaccinated when they were younger.
Everyone needs two doses of the vaccine, ideally given at 1 year old, and 3 years 4 months old.
A version of the vaccine without porcine is available too for anyone who  needs it for religious reasons.
Having the MMR vaccine is the best way to prevent measles. However, pregnant people or people with weakened immune systems should not have the vaccine. If they think they have had contact with someone with measles they should speak to their GP or midwife for further advice.
Studies show that after 2 doses of the MMR vaccine, 99% of people will be protected against measles so it really is the best way to help prevent you contracting the infection, and the best way you can help to stop spread of the infection to other people.

Where can I get the vaccine?

 The vaccine is free for everyone. 
If you or your child has not had the vaccine, or has missed their second dose, You can find out more about getting vaccinated or vaccinating babies and young children here.
Alternatively, University College Hospital is running MMR vaccination clinics for under 18s on Saturday 1 June, and Saturday 29 June.
This is a walk in service, however, you can book in advance. Please see the details of the clinic here.

I think I have measles/my child has measles. What should I do?

Please try to stay away from other people to avoid spreading the disease. You can use this 'Should I keep my child off school?' checklist for advice.
If you or your child has an appointment with us, please do not attend your appointment.  You can call us to tell us using the details on your appointment letter or alternatively you can call us on 020 7288 5511.
Call your GP surgery, visit  or call NHS 111 for advice on what you should do if you are exhibiting symptoms, or if your child is showing symptoms.
And if you think you or your child require emergency care, do not hesitate to call 999 for help.

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