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Measles jab fears

PUBLISHED: 08:52 05 March 2009 | UPDATED: 13:11 03 July 2010

CHILDREN could be stopped from attending nursery school unless they are vaccinated against measles, it has been suggested.

Great Yarmouth and Waveney has one of the lowest take-up rates for the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine in the region.

CHILDREN could be stopped from attending nursery school unless they are vaccinated against measles, it has been suggested.

Great Yarmouth and Waveney has one of the lowest take-up rates for the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine in the region. Concerns have been raised that it could lead to an epidemic of measles among local people.

NHS Yarmouth and Waveney has arranged for the parents of all unvaccinated children to be contacted, as well as some unvaccinated young adults, and asked to go to their surgery to get the MMR jab.

A board meeting last Wednesday heard that “measles is spreading easily among unvaccinated children”, who are also susceptible to mumps and rubella.

Lynne Warner, health protection nurse specialist, said: “Our worry is that there are cases of measles in Suffolk and we cannot be confident that the uptake among our cohort is high enough. The level of unvaccinated children is not good. Our statistics for the uptake of MMR are among the lowest in the eastern region. We are going as far as looking at data for uptake among individual uptakes and trying to drill down further.”

Non-executive director Steve Brighty said: “When I go on holiday and take my dog to the kennel, it has to have certain shots. I am not sure whether discrimination laws would allow it, but could we do that with kindergartens, that they only take children who have had MMR?”

Director of public health Alistair Lipp said: “There are issues around incentives and whether that is a good use of NHS resources. I think we need to discuss that in the round as a board, not just about this issue.”

Chairman David Edwards said: “I think the board would like to see further work and how that is being handled and what the outcome is going to be. I take the point that it is a national issue.”

Mrs Warner added: “I think the last statistics which haven't been verified, do show a bit of improvement.”


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