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Parents are being urged to ensure their children get vaccinated against measles after a surge in the number of confirmed cases of the viral disease.
The Health Protection Agency said parents should ensure their children receive two doses of MMR as the time of year for school trips and family holidays comes around.
Some 275 confirmed cases of measles in children and young adults have been reported to the agency since the start of the year, in comparison to 33 last year.
Cases are associated with either recent travel abroad or small clusters in mainly unvaccinated children and young adults between the ages of 10–24.
Dr Mary Ramsay, head of the immunisation department at the Health Protection Agency, said: “The recent upsurge in cases is probably related to recent travel to and from Europe. This means that measles can spread easily in schools, summer camps and universities among children and young adults who are not fully immunised.
“We again are reminding parents to remain vigilant against measles and that it’s never too late to get your child immunised with two doses of the MMR vaccine. We cannot stress enough that measles is serious and in some cases it can be fatal. Delaying immunisation puts children at risk.”
Copyright © Press Association 2011