Maths skills - Extracting and interpreting information

An important skill is in extracting relevant information from charts, graphs and tables. The questions below demonstrate applying this skill.

A graph showing the Vaccine uptake.Data sourced from Public Health England's Green Book (2013)
Question

Describe the pattern of measles cases between 1950 and 1998, before the measles vaccine was introduced.

In 1950 approximately 380,000 cases of measles were detected. The graph also shows that measles were regularly detected at approximately 600,000 cases per year in 1952 with reductions to approximately 150,000 cases in 1954. Clear fluctuations are detected until the introduction of the measles vaccine in 1968.

Question

Describe what happens to the number of measles cases after the introduction of the measles vaccines in 1968.

The measles vaccine was introduced in 1968 which caused a sharp decline to approximately 150,000 cases in 1969. A gradual decline was observed and in 1982 approximately 50,000 cases were recorded.

Question

Explain how the introduction of the new MMR vaccine affected the cases of measles recorded.

A new MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine was introduced in 1988, which caused a further sharp decline in recorded cases. In 1994 the Measles / Rubella campaign was introduced, and then a second dose of MMR immunisation was introduced in 1996, which resulted in cases falling to almost zero cases in 2004.