What is measles?
Measles usually starts with cold-like symptoms, followed by a rash a few days later. Some people may also get small spots in their mouth.
The first symptoms of measles include:
- a high temperature
- a runny or blocked nose
- a cough
- red, sore, watery eyes
There are other causes of rashes in babies and children too
How can you check if you are protected against measles
The best way to check is to log into your GP electronic health record if you have requested access to it and view your immunisation history using the NHS app or Patient Access. Please contact the surgery if you need help to do this
You should check when you had your MMR (Measles Mumps and Rubella vaccine) in the immunisations section. If you are unsure then please contact the Practice on 0161 343 6382.
How to get the MMR Vaccine
The MMR vaccine is usually given when you are 1 year old and then given a booster vaccine when you are 3 years and 4 months old.
2 MMR vaccines give lifelong 99% protection against measles. 1 vaccine will give 92% protection.
Sometimes babies over 6 months old are given the MMR vaccine earlier than usual if:
- they may have been exposed to the measles virus
- there is an outbreak of measles
- they are travelling abroad to a country where measles is common
Anyone who has not had 2 doses of the MMR vaccine should ask their GP surgery for a vaccination appointment. It is never too late to get the vaccine even as an adult!
It’s important to check you’ve had both doses if you:
- are about to start college or university
- are going to travel abroad
- are planning a pregnancy
- are a frontline health or social care worker
- were born between 1970 and 1979, as you may have only been vaccinated against measles
- were born between 1980 and 1990, as you may not be protected against mumps
There are 2 vaccine brands in the UK. One of those does not contain pork gelatine (Priorix). You can request this if you wish.
Protection against Measles, Mumps and Rubella starts to develop around 2 weeks after having the MMR vaccine.
What to do if you suspect you have measles
Do not panic! It’s very unlikely to be measles if you’ve had both doses of the MMR vaccine or you’ve had measles before.
Please do NOT come to the surgery, visit friends or relatives or send your child to school if you think they may have measles.
Ask for an urgent GP appointment or get help from NHS 111 if:
- you think you or your child may have measles
- you’ve been in close contact with someone who has measles and you’ve not had measles before or you’ve not had 2 doses of the MMR vaccine
- you’ve been in close contact with someone who has measles and you’re pregnant – measles can be serious in pregnancy
- you have a weakened immune system and think you have measles or have been in close contact with someone with measles
Measles can spread to others easily. Contact your GP surgery before you go in via our Online Consult Form and ideally send photos of the rash so that we can see what it looks like. We may suggest talking over the phone.
You can also call 111 or get help from 111 online.