Vaccine warning after measles case at Devon school

King Edward VI Community College
Image caption A pupil at King Edward VI Community College in Totnes has contracted measles

A student at a school in Devon has contracted measles.

In a letter to parents with children at schools and nurseries, Public Health England urged them to ensure children had received both MMR vaccinations.

It said other pupils at King Edward VI Community College in Totnes, Devon, may also have come into contact with the virus.

The Conservative MP for Totnes and a former GP, Sarah Wollaston, has added her supported to the initiative.

She said "relatively low" levels of immunisation in Totnes increased the risk of it spreading.

"It means that many more children are at risk within our community", she said and described it as a "serious and really distressing illness".

  • Measles is one of the most infection diseases known and can only be prevented through vaccination
  • About one in five children with measles experiences complications such as diarrhoea, vomiting, pneumonia and meningitis
  • While measles can lead to life-threatening health problems in some people, it usually passes within seven to 10 days
  • Symptoms include a runny nose, coughing, sore red eyes, a fever and small greyish-white spots on the inside of the cheeks

Source: NHS

Ms Wollaston has previously appealed for parents in Totnes to vaccinate their children against the virus, saying she believed many parents had rejected the MMR vaccine despite its now discredited links to autism and bowel disease.

"I hope that parents will look carefully at the letter that they've received and have their children immunised," Ms Wollaston said.

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