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Measles epidemic 'spreading at alarming rate'

27th March 2013

Public Health Wales has warned that measles cases in south west Wales are "spreading at an alarming rate" across the area.

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Officials said there were 432 total cases and 51 people had been admitted to hospital because of the effects of the disease. They said 116 cases had been reported in the last week.

Most cases have been reported in the Powys, Abertawe Bro Morgannwg and Hywel Dda health board areas. Data showed cases in Swansea had more than doubled over the last three weeks.

Dr Marion Lyons, director of health protection for PHW, said: "Measles is now spreading at an alarming rate across areas of Wales. Worryingly there are still tens of thousands of susceptible children across Wales, yet our weekly monitoring of vaccination rates shows only a slight increase in numbers receiving MMR jabs."

"If the numbers of parents bringing their children for MMR jabs does not dramatically increase, measles will continue to spread and quickly reach levels last seen in the outbreak in Dublin in 1999/2000. In that outbreak over 1,200 children were infected and three died." 

 

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