Doctors say it is vital to have second dose as report reveals immunisation figures

First published in News Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , Ilkley/Otley Reporter

Nine out of ten children in Bradford and Airedale had been immunised against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) by their second birthday, figures for 2011-2012 reveal.

Health and Social Care Information Centre figures for Bradford and Airedale teaching primary care trust show that 91.9 per cent of children in the district had received their first dose of the MMR vaccine by this age.

However, public health doctors in the district are urging parents to make sure their children have a second dose of the vaccine if they are over the age of three years and four months for full protection.

Nationally, 91.2 per cent of children at this age had received their first dose of the MMR vaccine – the highest recorded coverage since 1997-98.

The report; NHS Immunisation Statistics, England, 2011-12, shows that after a low of 79.9 per cent in 2003-04, MMR vaccination coverage has generally increased each year. However, it remains below the World Health Organisation target of at least 95 per cent of children immunised.

Shirley Brierley, public health consultant at NHS Airedale, Bradford and Leeds, said: “Parents can protect their children, and adults can protect themselves, against measles, mumps and rubella by ensuring they have been immunised with two doses of MMR.

“The MMR vaccine is the safest and most effective way of protecting children and young adults against what can be dangerous illnesses.

“It is important that all parents check that their children have had two doses of the MMR vaccination, if they are over three years and four months – one dose doesn’t give full protection.”

  • People have been urged to avoid making hospital visits if they suffer from the winter vomiting bug – norovirus – to stop it spreading.

Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which manages Bradford Royal Infirmary and St Luke’s Hospital, yesterday said it no cases of the virus, while Airedale Hospital said it did have some last month.

However, Dr Paul Godwin, microbiologist consultant at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, is asking anyone who has had any symptoms of diarrhoea and/or vomiting to not visit hospital until at least 48 hours after the symptoms have gone.

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