As children across Knowsley prepare to start primary school, Public Health experts are advising parents to make sure their children are fully immunised against MMR.
All parents of primary school starters are being asked to check their child’s Red Book now to make sure there is a record of two MMR doses and the 4-in-1 booster vaccine. If not, parents should contact their GP practice to arrange any further vaccinations that are needed.
Public Health England (PHE) North West is warning that 9000 five-year-olds in the North West may not be fully up-to-date with some routine immunisations.
These worrying estimates, released as part of PHE’s Value of Vaccines campaign, show that some four and five-year-olds are starting school at unnecessary risk of serious diseases compared to the majority of their classmates.
In the UK, dose one of the MMR vaccine, which protects against Measles, Mumps and Rubella, is usually given to infants at around 12 months of age. A second dose is given before school, usually at three years and four months of age, to ensure best protection.
Two doses of MMR in a lifetime are needed for a person to be considered fully protected. The 4-in-1 pre-school booster is also usually offered at three years and four months of age and protects against diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus and polio.
To check that your child has received all their vaccines on schedule, visit the NHS website and refer to your child’s Red Book. If in any doubt, contact your GP practice.