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About measles, mumps & rubella (MMR)
Measles, mumps and rubella are viral infections which can be prevented by having the Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) vaccine. They remain widespread in all parts of the world but are most common in Asia, Africa and South America. Outbreaks occur in Europe, North America and Australia/New Zealand, where populations are unvaccinated or under-vaccinated.
All three viruses are caught by breathing in infected droplets released when someone with one of the viruses coughs or sneezes or is picked up from surfaces and transferred into your nose and mouth from your hands.
Who can have the MMR vaccine?
The NHS offers immunisation against MMR as part of the NHS childhood vaccination programme. Anyone who has not had two doses of the MMR vaccine should ask their GP surgery for a vaccination appointment.
It is essential to check you've had both doses if you:
are about to start college or university
are going to travel abroad
are planning a pregnancy
are a frontline health or social care worker
were born between 1970 and 1979, as you may have only been vaccinated against measles
were born between 1980 and 1990, as you may not be protected against mumps
If you are unable to get the vaccine from your GP, we offer a private MMR vaccination service which is suitable for adults and children who:
Haven't already had the complete course of the MMR vaccine
Are 12 months of age or older
Are not pregnant or breastfeeding (and not planning pregnancy one month following vaccination)
Are not immunocompromised (a weakened immune system)
Haven't had an allergic reaction to a vaccine before
Haven't had a temperature in the 24 hours leading up to the appointment
How this service works
Select your preferred service option and book an appointment
Follow the link in your booking confirmation email to fill out the patient questionnaire (at least 12 hours before your appointment)
One of our prescribers will review the completed questionnaire and contact you to discuss this
Visit the branch at the selected date and time to receive the vaccine
Available service options
£55 per patient
Two doses of the MMR vaccine provide the best protection against measles, mumps and rubella.
£99 per patient
Two doses of the MMR vaccine provide the best protection against measles, mumps and rubella. The second dose is given at least 28 days after the first dose.
What our customers think
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Excellent service definitely would recommend, managed to get me appointment same day young lady was so professional in explaining and carrying out the treatment, feeling much better now, thank you.
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Excellent service received at Midway pharmacy Middleton Leeds yesterday both ears were totally blocked and the young girl that performed the syringing was friendly and explained what was happening clearly and efficiently all done in 10 minutes can hear again now fantastic!
Frequently asked questions
Why are babies given the MMR vaccine at one year plus three years and four months?
MMR at one year
Newborn babies have antibodies passed on from their mothers at birth, which helps protect them for a short time against measles, mumps and rubella. These antibodies make the MMR vaccine less effective if a newborn is vaccinated. By the time a child is one year old, the antibodies are almost gone, and the MMR vaccine will be effective.
MMR at three years and four months
The 2nd dose is given at around three years and four months before a child starts school. Having both doses gives long-lasting protection against measles, mumps and rubella.
Is the MMR vaccine ever given to babies earlier?
Babies over six months old are sometimes given the MMR vaccine earlier than usual if:
they may have been exposed to the measles virus
there is an outbreak of measles
they are travelling abroad to a country where measles is common
The two doses of MMR will still be needed when they're older to ensure complete protection.
How will I know when my child is due for the MMR vaccine?
You will usually be contacted by your GP practice when your child is due for routine vaccination either by a letter, text, phone call or email. You may also receive a letter from the Child Health Information Service to let you know your child is due for a vaccination.
If your child is due for a vaccination, you should call your GP practice to book the appointment. You do not need to wait to hear from them.
How do I check if I've had both doses of the MMR vaccine?
Your GP practice can check whether you've had both doses of the MMR vaccine. You may also access your vaccination record online through GP online services if your GP practice offers this service.
If your vaccination records are not available or do not exist, it will not harm you to have the MMR vaccine again.
Can I have the MMR vaccine if I'm pregnant?
As a precaution, the MMR vaccine is not recommended for pregnant women. You should also avoid becoming pregnant for one month after having the MMR vaccine. It's best to let your GP or midwife know if you had the MMR vaccine while pregnant.
Can I have the MMR vaccine if I have a weakened immune system?
The MMR vaccine is not recommended for people with a severely weakened immune system. For example, people receiving chemotherapy.
If you have a medical condition or are taking medicine that may affect your immune system, check with your healthcare provider if it's safe for you to have the MMR vaccine.
How many doses of the MMR vaccine do I need?
The MMR vaccine is given in two doses of a single injection into the thigh or upper arm muscle. Two doses of the vaccine are needed to ensure complete protection.
Can my child have single measles, mumps or rubella vaccines?
Single measles, mumps and rubella vaccines are not recommended.
Combined vaccines like the MMR vaccine are safe and help to reduce the number of injections your child needs.
The benefits include:
avoiding any delay between injections that could risk illness
reducing discomfort for your child
reducing the number of appointments needed
How effective is the MMR vaccine?
The MMR vaccine is very effective. After two doses:
around 99% of people will be protected against measles and rubella
around 88% of people will be protected against mumps
People vaccinated against mumps but still catch it are less likely to have serious complications or be admitted to the hospital.
Protection against measles, mumps and rubella starts to develop around two weeks after having the MMR vaccine.
What are the side effects of the MMR vaccine?
The MMR vaccine is very safe. Most side effects are mild and do not last long, such as:
the area where the needle goes in looks red, swollen and feeling sore for 2 to 3 days
around 7 to 11 days after the injection, babies or young children may feel a bit unwell or develop a high temperature for about 2 or 3 days
Some children might also cry and be upset immediately after the injection. This is normal, and they should feel better after a cuddle. It's important to remember that the possible complications of infectious conditions, such as measles, mumps and rubella, are much more severe.
Is the MMR vaccine linked to autism?
There's no evidence of any link between the MMR vaccine and autism. Many studies have investigated this.
Which countries have a risk of MMR?
There is an increased risk of MMR in the following places:
Much of Asia
The Indian sub-continent
Saudi Arabia (for Hajj or Umrah, for example) – this is strongly recommended due to recent outbreaks
MMR is part of routine childhood vaccination, and there have also been outbreaks in the following areas, so vaccinating against MMR is always a good idea:
The United States
Several European countries, including the UK
Where is this service available?
This service is available in our branches, which are commutable from anywhere in Yorkshire, including Leeds, Bradford, Wakefield, York, Huddersfield, Sheffield, Barnsley, Hull, Doncaster, Ripon, Harrogate, Dewsbury, Keighley and Scarborough.
Are next-day appointments available?
Yes, you can get next-day appointments at all our branches. Contact our customer care team if you cannot find an available slot.
Next-day appointments are available at our branches.