500,000 kids who haven't been vaccinated could be banned from going to school

MORE THAN 500,000 kids who have not had their measles jab could be banned from schools, the Health Secretary warned today.

In a dramatic step, Matt Hancock said he had not ruled out copying US states such as New York which has already imposed the ban.

It comes after alarming new figures revealed half a million children in England have not had their jab.

Quizzed on a ban, the Cabinet Minister said Britain “wasn’t there yet” but added he “wouldn’t rule anything out” in tackling the deadly health scare.

He told TalkRadio: “It’s people’s responsibility as a parent to do the right thing – the right thing for their own children as well as, of course, the right of the community that everybody lives in.”

Mr Hancock is hauling tech giants in for a dressing down next week where he will demand they “take down lies that are promoted on social media about the impact of vaccinations”.

But teachers blasted calls to ban unvaccinated kids from the classroom, warning that it risked causing a huge row with parents.

A spokesman for the school leaders’ trade union NAHT said: “A move to ban unvaccinated children from schools could cause huge friction between school leaders and parents.

“This is not the positive relationship which needs to exist to help each child succeed in school.”

Nansi Ellis, Assistant General Secretary of the National Education Union, said: “Schools won’t know who is vaccinated and it is not the responsibility of schools to be obtaining such medical information.

“It is better for schools, supported by medical professionals, to work with parents to get the message across about the importance of vaccination.”

What are measles, can you catch it twice, what are the symptoms and can you get the disease if you’ve had the MMR vaccine?

Measles is a highly contagious viral illness that can be prevented by taking the MMR vaccine.

Because of the medical injection available, cases are relatively uncommon. But instances can spike rapidly if an outbreak occurs.

While the infectious condition often clears up in under two weeks, it can sometimes lead to life-threatening complications.

Although measles can affect people of any age, and we have seen outbreaks among university students, it is most common in young children.

Public Health England has confirmed the UK has seen a rise in cases in 2018, with 643 confirmed cases of measles so far this year, compared to just 267 for the whole of 2017.

Health experts have said it is part of a rise in cases across Europe.

The illness is highly contagious and is easily spread from person to person.

Viruses can be expelled when an infected person coughs or sneezing.

In rare cases, measles can be fatal.

If you suspect you or one of your family members is infected, notify your GP to arrange an appointment.

Approximately 10 days after the illness is contracted, signs become noticeable.

The NHS outlines the initial symptoms of measles…

  • cold-like symptoms, such as a runny nose, sneezing, and a cough
  • sore, red eyes that may be sensitive to light
  • a high temperature (fever), which may reach around 40C (104F)
  • small greyish-white spots on the inside of the cheeks

Cases of the deadly virus have soared almost four-fold in the past year after a collapse in the number of parents getting their kids vaccinated.

NHS boss Simon Stevens has warned of a “public health timebomb”.

New York has already banned unvaccinated kids from schools and synagogues after cases of the lethal illness rocketed.

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