National Incident: Measles Cases

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) announced a national health incident in January 2024 due to rising measles cases. This is now being seen across the whole country, with an increasing number of cases in the North West. The surge in cases is caused by low MMR vaccine uptake.

We now have a number of confirmed cases of measles in East Lancashire and a confirmed case who attended East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.  Measles is highly infectious and can lead to serious health complications for unvaccinated individuals, particularly pregnant women, young children, and those with a weak immune system. These groups are at risk of developing severe complications including pneumonia, seizures (fits), blindness and meningitis. In pregnancy it increases the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, or premature birth.

If any member of staff shows signs and symptoms of possible measles it is vital that they DO NOT present to accident or emergency or a GP surgery. They should phone their GP surgery for advice. Measles usually starts with cold-like symptoms, followed by a rash a few days later. Some people may also get small spots in their mouth.

The first symptoms of measles include:

  •      a high temperature
  •      a runny or blocked nose
  •      sneezing
  •      a cough
  •      red, sore, watery eyes

It is recommended that you discuss with your staff their vaccination status. Anyone who is not vaccinated, or is unsure if they’ve been vaccinated, should contact their GP practice to arrange catch-up vaccination.  Further information is available at: