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North-East measles outbreak continues
THE NUMBER OF people who have fallen victim to a measles outbreak in the North-East has risen by 30 in a week.
Figures released today (Tuesday March 19) show 164 confirmed cases and 158 suspected cases of measles have been reported in the region since the beginning of September 2012.
The majority of cases are in the Teesside area, with 42 people in Middlesbrough and 65 people in Stockton affected.
In County Durham, 19 people have come down with the highly contagious illness and 28 in Darlington.
The figures, published by the Health Protection Agency (HPA) show 40 per cent of all reported cases involve young people between the age of ten and 19, who continue to be the most affected.
Julia Waller, immunisation lead for the HPA in the North East, encouraged people to vaccinate themselves against the illness.
She said: ““Measles is highly infectious and unvaccinated children and adults who haven’t had it before are at risk when it is circulating, as it is now in this region.
“There is no treatment for measles but it can be prevented by the MMR vaccine and two doses are required to ensure the best protection.
“If anyone is unsure about their immunisation status they should check with their GP. If you’ve missed out on MMR in the past it’s always possible to catch-up as the vaccine can be given at any age.”
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