MMR mandatory vaccination

Questions to the Mayor of London – answered on 21st October 2019.

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Photo of Joanne McCartney Joanne McCartney Labour

Given the falling rate of MMR vaccinations is it now time for mandatory vaccination of our children?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

More children in London need to be vaccinated and the NHS is redoubling efforts to increase uptake rates and give children the best protection.  Big cities often have lower uptake of vaccinations, reflecting high population mobility.  As children move, families might not register with a new GP, and invitations to appointments can go to the wrong address.

Vaccinations are not compulsory in the UK. Almost all parents decide to have their children immunised. Evidence shows that mandatory vaccination is not always effective in increasing uptake, and it could risk causing people to become resistant to receiving vaccines.

We cannot be complacent. We need to make it as easy as possible for families to access vaccinations, as even small groups of children missing out on or delaying their vaccines leaves them and others vulnerable to serious or even fatal infections. The NHS and Local Government need adequate resources to deliver services like immunisation if the government is serious about prevention.