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MMR vaccine uptake falls short of UK target

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Efforts to vaccinate children in England with the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) jab are improving but still fall short of a target set by the World Health Organisation (WHO), according to a report.

The proportion of children in England having at least one dose of the vaccine by the time they reach the age of two reached 88.2% in 2009-10, rising from 84.9% in 2008-09, however the WHO target is set at 95%.

At least one dose of MMR is encouraged for children before they reach two years old, with a second dose recommended by the age of five.

A new report from the NHS Information Centre found the number of children having the MMR jab in England is still lower than in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

In Wales, 92.2% of children have been vaccinated. In Scotland, the rate is 93.7% and in Northern Ireland it’s 92.2%.

In England, the highest proportion vaccinated with MMR by the age of two was in the south central strategic health authority region at 91.4%.

The lowest was in the London region at 81.9%.

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