Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the Free Press
10:34 AM 7th March 2024

Latest Measles Statistics Published - 7 March 2024


The latest number of laboratory confirmed measles cases in England have been published in an updated epidemiological overview by UKHSA.

Since the last update a week ago, a further 83 laboratory confirmed measles cases have been confirmed in England. This brings the total number of cases confirmed since 1 October 2023 to 733.

Although the outbreak in the West Midlands initially drove the increase in cases, clusters of cases in other regions such as the North West have continued to increase in the past weeks.

In the 4 weeks since 5 February 2024, there have been 192 laboratory confirmed measles cases. The highest number of cases continue to be reported in the West Midlands (34%, 66 of 192) although case numbers in that region have now stabilised at a high level. 21% (41 of 192) of cases have been reported in the North West, 19% (39 of 192) in London, 13% in the East Midlands (25 of 192) and 7% (13 of 192) in Yorkshire and the Humber.

Since 1 October 2023 in England there have been 733 laboratory confirmed measles cases, 17 cases were reported in October, 42 in November, 158 in December, 276 in January and 239 in February and 1 so far in March 2024. 59% (432 of 733) of these cases have been in the West Midlands, 15% (112 of 733) in London and 8% (58 of 733) in the North West. The remaining cases were reported in other regions of England.

The majority (462 of 733, 63%) of these cases were in children under the age of 10 and 29.5% (216 of 733) in young people and adults over the age of 15.

The data published in this epidemiological overview covers the period between 1 October 2023 and 4 March 2024 and is currently provisional, with the number of cases for the most recent months likely to increase as more suspected cases undergo confirmatory testing.

Dr Vanessa Saliba, UKHSA Consultant Epidemiologist, said:
"Worryingly we are continuing to see an increase of measles cases in some areas, most recently in parts of the North-West, where we know MMR vaccine uptake is low.

"Parents are already coming forward to take up the offer of the MMR vaccine for their children, but 100s of thousands of unvaccinated children are at risk of serious illness or life-long complications. The disease spreads very easily among those who are unvaccinated, especially in schools and nurseries, however measles is completely preventable with vaccination.

"Our recently launched childhood vaccinations campaign is reminding parents of the importance of getting their children vaccinated on time. Parents can check their child’s Red Book to see they are fully up to date with their MMR jabs and all their routine vaccines. If any have been missed or if you’re unsure get in touch with your GP practice and respond promptly if the NHS gets in touch for your child to catch up."

Epidemiological updates will be continue to be published every Thursday.