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Measles cases: highest annual total since 1994

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A total of 2,016 confirmed cases of measles in England and Wales were reported to the Health Protection Agency (HPA) in 2012, constituting the highest annual total since 1994.

The cases identified during 2012 have been associated with prolonged outbreaks in Merseyside and Sussex, as well as smaller outbreaks in travelling communities.

The UK, along with France, Italy, Spain and Romania, accounted for 87 per cent of the total 7,392 measles cases reported throughout the EU.

Dr Mary Ramsay, head of immunisation at the HPA, said: 'Measles is highly infectious and can affect anyone who is susceptible, including toddlers in whom vaccination has been delayed. Older children who were not vaccinated at the routine age, who may now be teenagers, are at particular risk of becoming exposed.'

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