More than 100 babies in Redbridge not vaccinated against potentially deadly illnesses
PUBLISHED: 07:00 14 July 2020
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More than 100 babies are missing out on potentially life-saving jabs in Redbridge, with vaccine uptake remaining below the level the World Health Organisation says is needed for herd immunity.
The WHO recommends at least 95pc of newborns should get the six-in-one jab, which protects against six serious infections including polio, whooping cough and diphtheria.
But 87.4pc of infants born in Redbridge who had their first birthday between January and March have been vaccinated, according to Public Health England (PHE) data.
This means 136 babies missed out, although it is not recommended for those with allergies to the vaccine.
However, immunisation rates have increased from the previous quarter, when 86.6pc of babies were vaccinated.
Across England, vaccination rates stood at 92.7pc between January and March 2020.
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Professor Kevin Fenton, London regional director for PHE said big cities generally have a lower uptake of vaccination rates because more people move frequently and may not register with a new GP.
Another reason is invitations to appointments go to the wrong address.
He said: “We urge all parents in London to ensure their children are up to date on their routine vaccinations, which offer vital protection from a range of serious but preventable diseases.
“Even small groups of children missing out on or delaying their vaccines leaves them and others vulnerable to life-threatening or even fatal infections.”
But the Department of Health and Social Care said some people may have felt unsafe taking their baby for their jabs during the coronavirus crisis, and that it is working to address this.
A spokeswoman said: “Every child must be vaccinated against dangerous and potentially fatal diseases and it’s vital that vaccinations are up-to-date.
“We are aware some parents may have felt uncomfortable accessing services during the peak of the pandemic.
“We are working with NHS England and Improvement and Public Health England to catch-up with those people who may have missed out on their vaccination as quickly and as safely as possible.”
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