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What’s new for MMR? An update for primary care nurses

Catherine Heffernan looks at how MMR immunisations are changing in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted childhood immunisation schedules across the globe. Despite efforts in the UK to continue the vaccination service offer, uptake of childhood immunisations, particularly MMR (Measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine dropped. This has been attributed to missed appointments, lockdowns, staff absences and the seismic effects of the difficulties recovering other health services. Vaccine coverage for 2021-22 was lower than the previous year, coverage of first dose MMR (MMR1) at 24 months was down from 90.3% to 89.2% in 2021-22 and similarly the coverage of MMR 1 at 5 years was down to 93.4% from 94.3%.1 Uptake is considerably lower in London, which is affected by large population mobility and social disadvantage. MMR is a two dose regime. First dose at 12/13 months and the 2nd dose between 3 years 3 months and 5 years. However, people remain eligible throughout their lives and can have the two doses at any point.2

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