Youngsters urged to get MMR jab

AROUND 10,000 youngsters in Suffolk have not been properly protected against measles, mumps and rubella, it emerged today.

AROUND 10,000 youngsters in Suffolk have not been properly protected against measles, mumps and rubella, it emerged today.

NHS Suffolk is writing to all people under 18 who have not had the recommended two MMR vaccinations to protect against the diseases, offering them a second chance to have the jab.

The free programme is part of a government-funded initiative designed to tackle the problem of a low uptake of MMR, which could make an outbreak of measles more likely.

Dr Brian Keeble, NHS Suffolk's immunisation coordinator, said: “We have been becoming increasingly worried about the number of youngsters in Suffolk who are not protected against these diseases and so are delighted that the government has come up with this money.”

The letter explains that the vaccinations are available free of charge from GPs and all parents or young people have to do is ring the surgery to make an appointment.

Every GP practice in the NHS Suffolk area is participating in the programme.

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Dr Keeble added: “There has been a lot of concern in recent years about the MMR vaccination.

”Those concerns have now been shown to be completely without foundation and the vaccine is as safe as any other childhood vaccination.

“I very much hope that people will take this second chance to be protected against these unpleasant and potentially dangerous diseases.”

Will you make sure your child gets the MMR vaccine? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.