Scots measles rate lower than UK but up on 2012

A young boy is given the MMR vaccine in Glasgow. Picture: Getty
A young boy is given the MMR vaccine in Glasgow. Picture: Getty
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RATES of measles in Scotland remain lower than the rest of the UK, but cases are up on last year, figures show.

Health Protection Scotland (HPS) said in the first 12 weeks of this year there were 26 notifications of clinically suspected measles - up from 18 for the same period last year.

It comes as an outbreak in Swansea continues to spread, with more than 600 cases of measles reported.

HPS said Scotland has not seen any outbreaks comparable to those in the Swansea and areas in the north-west of England where rates had been higher.

“Scotland’s overall rate is also significantly lower than that of either England or Wales,” their report said.

HPS also said that coverage of children having one MMR jab before the age of five remained above the target of 95 per cent in Scotland.

But the report added. “Uptake of two doses of MMR has risen across 2012 and is now at an all-time high, although it is still under the target uptake of 95 per cent.

The figures showed that at the end of last year, 97.1 per cent had received one MMR jab by the age of five, while 93 per cent had received two doses.

Yesterday’s figures also revealed that cases of whooping cough continue to remain high following a surge in illness last year.

During 2012 there were 2,044 reports of whooping cough compared to 85 in 2011.

The high rates have continued with 439 notifications in the first 12 weeks of 2013 compared to 70 during the same period in 2012.