Residents in the North East have been advised to consult their GPs about having the MMR vaccine after a rise in the number of cases of mumps reported in the past year.
Figures released by the Health Protection Agency have revealed that more than 100 cases of mumps were reported in November, roughly double the number recorded in the same period last year.
The spike in the number of cases has prompted health officials to call on residents to consult their GPs about having the MMR vaccine if they are currently unprotected.
Julie Waller, from the Health Protection Agency, said: “We have seen a sharp rise in the figures this year and teenagers and young adults who have not had two doses of MMR vaccine are particularly vulnerable.
“There is evidence, particularly in Newcastle, that the disease is spreading in student populations.
“However, it’s not just students who are at risk and we would urge everyone to consult their family doctors about having two doses of MMR vaccine if they are currently unprotected.
“There are still many teenagers and young adults out there who would not have been vaccinated as toddlers and remain unprotected.
“Unfortunately this means that mumps, which is highly infectious, is spreading easily among the under 25s.”