Page last updated at 15:20 GMT, Friday, 17 April 2009 16:20 UK

Fresh measles cases are confirmed

Syringe
Vaccination "catch-up" sessions have been held in the Llandudno area

Health officials say the number of confirmed measles cases in a north Wales outbreak is continuing to rise.

Fourteen cases of the disease linked to two schools in Llandudno, Conwy, have now been confirmed.

The National Public Health Service for Wales (NPHS) says there are now also 31 suspected cases.

However, the NPHS says it still believes the cases are not linked to an outbreak of measles in parts of Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire.

Earlier this month it recorded eight suspected and two confirmed cases of the infection in Llanelli, eight suspected cases in south Pembrokeshire, and two more in Burry Port.

The NPHS is urging parents to ensure their children have received the two recommended doses of vaccination against the disease.

During the Easter holidays, jab "catch-up" sessions have been held in the Llandudno area for concerned families, connected to the two schools, Ysgol Ffordd Dyffryn and Ysgol John Bright.

NPHS consultant, Dr Chris Whiteside said: "Measles is a highly contagious infectious disease and children who have not been immunised are at risk.

"Measles can be prevented by use of the safe and highly effective measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine.

"Receiving the vaccine - delivered in two doses to ensure the best protection against mumps and rubella as well as measles - means that children have a smaller than 1 per cent chance of contracting measles."

Latest figures for measles cases in Wales and England show that there has been an almost 40% increase in the infection compared to 2007.

While most people make a full recovery from the disease, it can lead to severe complications, including eye disorders, deafness, brain damage, and even death.



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