Measles Outbreak: Millions in the UK are Being Urged to Get MMR Vaccine

Measles Outbreak: Millions in the UK are Being Urged to Get MMR Vaccine

02 / Feb

Health care experts warn that measles cases are expected to increase rapidly unless more people are vaccinated. 

Alarmingly, over four million parents and guardians, along with numerous young adults, have been contacted due to missed doses of the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine for themselves or their children.

What is measles and what are the symptoms?

Measles, a highly contagious disease transmitted through coughs and sneezes, presents with symptoms such as:

  • high fever
  • sore, red and watery eyes
  • coughing
  • sneezing
  • Small white spots may appear inside the mouth.

People with measles also get white spots in their mouth and a red rash, which starts on the face and spreads to the body. The rash might be harder to see on dark skin. 

Measles usually goes away in about a week or two, but it can lead to serious problems like pneumonia or meningitis, especially in babies, pregnant women, and people with weak immune systems.

What is measles and what are the symptoms?

Can adults get measles?

You can catch measles at any age. If you catch it while pregnant, the disease can lead to stillbirth, miscarriage or babies being born small.

The NHS urges adults to ensure they have had both doses of the MMR vaccine before starting a family.

Can I catch measles twice?

It is possible, but happens rarely.  Your body usually becomes immune to measles after the first time you catch it

What are the side effects of the MMR vaccine?

Most people who get the MMR vaccine do not have any serious problems with it. Getting an MMR vaccine is much safer than getting measles, mumps, or rubella.

Common side effects:

  • Sore arm from the shot
  • Fever
  • Mild rash
  • Temporary pain and stiffness in the joints, mostly in teenage or adult women who did not already have immunity to the rubella component of the vaccine

How common is measles, and where are the worst outbreaks?

In 2023, measles cases dramatically increased in England and Wales, signaling a concerning public health trend. The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) reported a significant surge to 1,603 suspected measles cases, a substantial increase from the 735 cases in 2022 and 360 cases in 2021.

The West Midlands region, with Birmingham at the epicenter, emerged as the most affected area, recording over 200 cases in recent months. 

Additionally, London experienced outbreaks with only 74% of five-year-olds in the city having received both doses of the MMR vaccine. In specific areas like Hackney in East London, the situation is more dire, with nearly half of the children under five years old not fully vaccinated against measles.

Beyond these major hotspots, England has witnessed smaller, yet notable clusters of measles cases in various locations.

On a broader scale, the World Health Organization (WHO) has expressed deep concern over the measles situation across Europe. The year 2023 saw a staggering 30-fold increase in measles cases continent-wide, with over 30,000 people infected. This figure stands in stark contrast to the 941 cases recorded throughout 2022, highlighting a rapid spread of this infectious disease

Why are measles cases rising?

There’s a growing concern about measles because not enough young kids are getting the MMR vaccine. This vaccine protects against measles, mumps, and rubella. 

The World Health Organization (WHO) says 95% of kids need to have two doses of this vaccine to keep measles away. But right now, only about 85% of kids had both doses by their fifth birthday in 2022-23. That’s the lowest it’s been since 2010-11.

In big cities like Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, and Nottingham, the situation is worse – only 75% of five-year-olds are fully vaccinated, according to NHS data. This means in England, over 3.4 million children under 16 aren’t protected against measles.

The problem isn’t just in England. Across Europe, less kids are getting vaccinated, putting over 1.8 million children at risk.

Experts think one reason for this is that some parents don’t realise how serious measles can be. Since it was almost wiped out before, they might not think it’s important to vaccinate their kids. Also, during the Covid pandemic, lots of regular health check-ups were missed.

There’s still a false belief among some people that the MMR vaccine can cause autism. This idea was popular when today’s young adults were kids, so many of them didn’t get vaccinated.

Where can I get MMR Vaccine in Leeds?

You can get MMR vaccination at The Care Pharmacy Vaccination Clinic in Leeds. Book your appointment today and get free consultation, our team of experts are here to address all your questions and concerns. 

References: 

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-birmingham-68007804 

https://abc7.com/measles-outbreak-2024-us-cases-cdc/14365918/ 

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2024/jan/23/world-health-organization-who-measles-warning-cases-rise-europe 

Written by:
  • editor thinkingbox

Chickenpox Vaccine

Chickenpox is a common viral infection caused by the varicella zoster virus. This vaccine is suitable for adults and children aged between one and 65 years.

Price Per Dose: £ 74.99

Shingles Vaccine

Shingles vaccine helps to protect against getting shingles.Shingles is an infection that causes a painful rash and It’s suitable for adults aged 50 and above.

Price Per Dose: £ 219.99

Yellow Fever

Yellow fever is a viral disease caused by the yellow fever virus and transmitted through the bite of infected mosquitoes. It can lead to severe symptoms, including fever, headache, jaundice, and in severe cases, organ failure and death. Travelers visiting areas where yellow fever is endemic, particularly in tropical regions of Africa and South America, are at risk of contracting the disease. The yellow fever vaccine is a highly effective preventive measure for travelers. The typical dosing routine involves a single dose of the vaccine, which provides immunity for at least 10 years. Some countries require proof of yellow fever vaccination for entry. It is essential for travelers to get vaccinated before their journey to protect themselves and prevent the spread of the disease.

Price Per Dose: £ 69.99

Typhoid

Typhoid is a bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Salmonella Typhi. It spreads through contaminated food and water, and its symptoms include high fever, abdominal pain, and severe gastrointestinal issues. Travelers visiting regions with poor sanitation and inadequate hygiene standards are at a heightened risk of contracting typhoid. The typhoid vaccine is a crucial preventive measure for travelers. There are two types of typhoid vaccines available – the injectable vaccine and the oral vaccine. The typical dosing routine for the injectable vaccine involves a single shot. Get vaccinated against typhoid – it is essential for travelers to avoid the risk of infection and enjoy a safe and healthy journey.

Price Per Dose: £ 39.99

TBE (Tick-Borne Encephalitis)

Tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) is a viral disease transmitted to humans through the bite of infected ticks. It primarily affects the central nervous system and can lead to severe neurological symptoms, such as inflammation of the brain. Travelers visiting regions where TBE is endemic, especially during outdoor activities in wooded or grassy areas, face an increased risk of contracting the disease. The TBE vaccine provides effective protection against this potentially serious infection. The typical dosing routine involves a series of two to three doses, depending on the vaccine type used. Booster doses are also recommended to maintain immunity over time. Getting vaccinated against TBE is essential for travelers to mitigate the risk of infection and enjoy a safe and enjoyable trip.

Price Per Dose: £ 64.99

Rabies

Rabies is a deadly viral disease that affects the nervous system and is primarily transmitted through the bite of infected animals. The virus can cause a fatal infection if not treated promptly. Travelers, especially those visiting regions where rabies is prevalent and may have encounters with stray animals or wildlife, face an increased risk of contracting the disease. The Rabies vaccine is a preventive measure to protect against rabies. The typical dosing routine involves a series of doses. Typically this is given before potential exposure to the virus or after a potential exposure to ensure effective protection. Getting vaccinated against rabies is crucial for travelers to avoid the devastating consequences of this lethal infection and enjoy a safe journey.

Price Per Dose: £ 69.99

Pneumococcal (PCV/ PPSV)

The Pneumococcal vaccine, available as pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV), provides protection against various strains of pneumococcal bacteria. These bacteria can cause serious infections, including pneumonia, meningitis, and bloodstream infections. The PCV is primarily given to infants and young children, while PPSV is typically administered to older adults and individuals with specific medical conditions.

The typical dosing routine for PCV involves a series of doses given at specific ages during infancy. PPSV requires a single dose for most individuals, with a possible booster dose after a certain period.

Price Per Dose (PCV): £ 89.99

Price Per Dose (PPSV): £ 49.99

MMR

The MMR vaccine is a combination vaccine that provides protection against three highly contagious diseases: measles, mumps, and rubella. It is a crucial part of routine childhood immunizations. Also, it is recommended for adults who have not been vaccinated or lack immunity to these diseases. The typical dosing routine for the MMR vaccine involves two doses. The first dose is administered around the age of 12 to 15 months, and the second dose given between 4 to 6 years old. Getting vaccinated with the MMR vaccine is essential to prevent the spread of these potentially serious infections.

Ensure you and your loved ones are protected against measles, mumps, and rubella! Our experienced healthcare professionals are ready to provide you with the MMR vaccine. Come and get vaccinated with us to safeguard your health and contribute to a healthier community.

Price Per Dose: £ 44.99

Meningitis B

Meningitis B is a bacterial infection causing inflammation of the brain and spinal cord membranes. The risk of contracting it while traveling is generally low but increases in crowded settings. Be aware of the symptoms and ensure protection by getting vaccinated with us before your journey. Stay informed and stay safe during your travels.

Price Per Dose: £ 109.99

Meningitis ACWY

Meningitis ACWY is a bacterial infection that causes inflammation of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord. The disease is caused by different types of bacteria, namely A, C, W, and Y. It can lead to severe health complications, including brain damage and death. Travelers, especially those visiting crowded settings like festivals, pilgrimages, or dormitory-style accommodations, may face an increased risk of contracting meningitis ACWY. To minimize the risk, vaccination is recommended, particularly when traveling to areas with active outbreaks or regions where the disease is more prevalent.

Price Per Dose: £ 49.99

Japanese Encephalitis

Japanese encephalitis is a viral infection transmitted through mosquito bites, primarily found in rural areas of Asia and the Western Pacific. The disease affects the brain and can lead to severe inflammation, resulting in neurological complications or even death. Travelers visiting or residing in regions where Japanese encephalitis is endemic, especially during the peak mosquito season, face an increased risk of contracting the virus. Taking preventive measures, such as using mosquito repellents, wearing protective clothing, and getting vaccinated, is crucial for travelers to reduce their risk of Japanese encephalitis and enjoy a safe journey.

The typical dosing for the Japanese encephalitis vaccine involves a two-dose series, with the second dose administered 28 days after the first.

Price Per Course: £ 199.99

HPV

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a common viral infection that is primarily transmitted through sexual contact. There are multiple strains of HPV, some of which can lead to genital warts and others that can cause various cancers, including cervical, anal, and throat cancer. Travelers, especially those engaging in risky sexual behaviors, may be at risk of contracting HPV, as the virus can be prevalent worldwide. Practicing safe sex and getting vaccinated against HPV are essential preventive measures for travelers to reduce their risk of infection and the associated health complications.

Price Per Dose: £ 164.99

Hepatitis A Typhoid Combined

The Hepatitis A Typhoid combined vaccine is a convenient option for travelers seeking protection against both Hepatitis A and typhoid fever. The typical dosing schedule involves a single shot, providing immunity against both infections. This combination vaccine saves time and effort while ensuring comprehensive coverage against these travel-related diseases.

Price Per Course: £ 89.99

Hepatitis A Hepatitis B Combined

The Hepatitis A Hepatitis B combined vaccine offers protection against both Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B viruses. The typical dosing schedule involves three doses, administered at 0, 1, and 6 months. This vaccine is an excellent option for individuals seeking comprehensive protection against both hepatitis viruses in a convenient single shot.

Price Per Course: £249.99

Cholera

Cholera is a severe bacterial infection causing profuse watery diarrhea and vomiting, primarily transmitted through contaminated food and water. Traveling abroad increases the risk of contracting cholera. This is especially true in areas with poor sanitation or during outbreaks. Taking preventive measures such as getting vaccinated is crucial for travelers’ protection.

The Cholera vaccine is typically administered as two-doses, the first dose given at least one week before potential exposure to cholera and the second dose taken at least one week after the first dose.

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Price Per Course: £59.99

Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is a viral liver infection primarily transmitted through infected blood or body fluids. Travelers and others in high-risk situations, such as unsafe medical procedures or unprotected sex, face an increased risk of contracting the virus. Vaccination against hepatitis B and adopting preventive measures are essential to safeguard against this serious infection.

The typical dosing for the hepatitis B vaccine involves a series of three doses. The initial dose is followed by a second dose at least one month later, and a third dose six months after the first dose. This vaccination provides long-term protection against hepatitis B.

Price Per Course: £149.99

Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A is a viral infection that primarily affects the liver, causing inflammation and potentially leading to symptoms like fever, nausea, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes). The virus is commonly transmitted through consuming contaminated food or water. While hepatitis A can occur anywhere, the risk of contracting it increases significantly when traveling abroad, especially to regions with poor sanitation and hygiene practices. Tourists may unknowingly consume contaminated food or water, putting them at risk of infection. It is crucial for travelers to be aware of the risk and take preventive measures, such as getting vaccinated against hepatitis A, to protect themselves during their journeys.

The typical dosing for the hepatitis A vaccine involves a two-dose series. The first dose is administered before potential exposure to the virus, and the second dose is given 6 to 18 months later to provide long-term immunity. For a booster dose, a single shot is usually recommended for ongoing protection after the initial series. Ensuring full vaccination with the recommended dosing schedule is essential to prevent hepatitis A infection and maintain immunity, especially when traveling to regions with a higher risk of the disease.

Price Per Dose: £59.99

Diptheria, Tetanus And Polio

Diphtheria, tetanus, and polio are significant infectious diseases to consider when traveling abroad. Diphtheria is a respiratory infection that causes breathing difficulties and potentially life-threatening complications. Tetanus, also known as “lockjaw,” induces severe muscle stiffness and spasms, transmitted through contaminated wounds. Polio is a viral infection that can lead to paralysis, impacting the nervous system. While vaccinations have controlled these diseases in many places, some regions may still pose risks.

Before traveling, it is recommended to get a single booster dose for diphtheria, tetanus, and polio. This reinforces immunity and reduces the risk of contracting these diseases in regions where they may still be prevalent. Ensure a safe and healthy journey by receiving the recommended booster before you travel.

Price Per Course: £39.99