New university students are being urged to ensure they have been vaccinated against measles following outbreaks of the highly infectious illness. Public Health England has said that all first years should check they are up to date with their vaccines and seek MMR jabs if they have missed any. The call comes as the number of cases of measles in Europe has reached an eight-year high.
The MenACWY vaccine, which protects against meningitis, is another vaccine that should be checked before the start of term.
Some students that would be starting university this year may have missed out on the MMR vaccine as children, as uptake was low in 2003. There are more than 41,000 cases of measles with 37 resulting in death recorded across Europe during the first half of this year. England has also experienced an increased outbreak in measles, with 828 lab confirmed cases between 1st January and 13th August.
If you think you might have missed your MMR vaccinations, they are available to anyone who did not receive two doses as a child. The MenACWY jab, introduced in 2015, protects against four meningococcal strains that cause meningitis and septicaemia.
Anyone who has missed out can be vaccinated free of charge before their 25th birthday.