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It’s never too late!

A discredited  study by Andrew Wakefield, published in 1998, linking the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine with autism, siginficantly undermined UK efforts to achieve the 95% uptake needed to elimate measles.

Parental concerns led to a decline in uptake and by 2006 transmission of measles had risen to endemic levels; disproportionally impacting primary school children, a further large outbreak in 2012 affected teenagers.

Targetted, national campaigns during the new millennium saw first dose coverage of 2 year old children peak at 93% and by 2016 measles had been eliminated* in the UK (World Health Organsiation, 2017).

“Elimination indicates only that measles is no longer native to the UK, not that it has been eradicated!  Measles remains endemic in many countries around the world, UK travellers not fully vaccinated remain susceptible”.

Where MMR uptake has fallen below 95% several large outbreaks of measles have occurred; young people and adults aged 15 years – who missed out on MMR vaccination when they were younger – have been particularly affected.

Measles is the most infectious illness known to man.  It is much easier to catch than flu or Ebola.   Measles can be serious and lead to complications such as infections of the lungs and brain, and on rare occassions, can be fatal.

Regrettably, the UK and three other European countries lost the ‘elimination’ status as of June 2019 due entirely to the decline in recent years and attributed to the rise of misinformation on social media.

If you have not had 2 doses of MMR vaccine (or are unsure) you remain at risk – it’s never too late to get vaccinated!

 

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Climate Change is no joke!

When you hear the words ‘Climate Change’ do you roll your eyes, scratch your head and wonder if it’s all a hoax?   Perhaps an indicator of how real it is can be seen through the eyes of the Association of British Insurers (ABI).

The ABI are clear that the insurers are at the forefront of dealing with the impact climate change has on communities and infrastructure across the world.   But does this translate into positive action on their part; actions where the costs are not wholly transferred to the customer?

Absoutely!   The ABI is a founding member of ClimateWise, a global insurance industry initiative established in 2007; coincidental with some of the worst flooding experienced in the UK.   Signatories agree to report their progress against six key principles:

  • Accountability;
  • Incorporate climate-related issues into their strategies and investments;
  • Lead in the identification, understanding and management of climate risk;
  • Reduce the environmental impact of their business;
  • Inform public policy making;
  • Support climate awareness amongst their customers/clients and enhance reporting.

The insurance industry is investing £billions in green technologies and funding of academic research –  they don’t think climate change is a joke!

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