Public Health England are encouraging parents to check all family members have their MMR vaccinations before setting off on holiday this summer, following an outbreak of measles in Europe.
If you’re jetting off for your summer holiday with the family, you’ve probably got a lot of things to get organised including passports, travel insurance, sun cream and the little one’s swimming trunks.
And, we have something you should be adding to your to-do-list – check you’re child has had their latest MMR jab – the measles, mumps and rubella vaccination.
Highest cases of measles have occurred in Germany, Bulgaria, Romania, France and Poland.
ABTA’s Director of Destinations and Sustainability, Nikki White, said: ‘Travellers might not typically think to check vaccination requirements for travel to Europe, but we encourage everyone to check their health records and catch-up on any missed vaccinations wherever they are travelling to.’
Dr Mary Ramsay, head of immunisation at PHE, is calling for families to check they have been fully vaccinated before travelling.
She says: ‘Measles can kill and is incredibly easy to catch, especially if you’re not vaccinated and travelling to affected countries.
‘If you’re in any doubt about your – or your child’s – vaccination status, ask your GP or check your child’s Red Book.
‘Before you travel you should ensure you and your family are up to date with all currently recommended UK vaccines and MMR is especially important if you’re planning to travel throughout the summer due to the ongoing outbreaks happening across Europe.’
Following the recent anti-vaccine hysteria spreading on social media, fewer and fewer parents have been vaccinating their children, despite the surge in measles.
More than half a million children in the UK were not given the crucial MMR jab between the years 2010- 2017.
In April, NHS chief Simon Stevens warned of measles cases in the UK quadrupling in just one year.
This highly contagious viral disease often affects children and is identifiable by a measles rash, and can affect the brain, lungs and eyes. In some cases, measles can be fatal.