Parents have been urged to get their children vaccinated amid a rise in the number of measles cases nationwide.

Hackney is the local authority area with the lowest uptake of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine in the whole country.

The council has now urged families to check they are up to date with the vaccine, after the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said that there had been more than 500 cases of measles since October last year.

Hackney is considered to be at “high risk” of a measles outbreak due to its low MMR vaccine uptake.

The disease is a highly contagious viral infection that spreads very easily among those who are unvaccinated, especially in nurseries and schools. 

Hackney Council has said that measles is a “serious illness” – between 20% and 40% of affected cases can require hospital admission. In rare cases the disease can also be fatal.

Dr Sandra Husbands, director of public health for Hackney and the City, said: “Children who get measles can be very unwell and some will suffer life changing complications. 

“The best way for parents to protect their children from measles is the MMR vaccine. Two doses of the MMR vaccine gives lifelong protection.”

  • Upcoming catch up clinics will be held on March 16 and 23 at Hackney Central Library from 10.30am until 2.30pm. If you would like to book a free vaccine for your child please call: 0207 613 9044 or email