Marketing campaign launched to increase child vaccinations
A close up on a pile of medical needles. They are all empty.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is launching a marketing campaign across England to remind parents and carers of the risk of their children missing out on protection against serious diseases like measles.

The campaign goes live on 4 March with a video advert told from the perspective of children and in their voices. The line “if we’re not vaccinated, we’re not protected” is said by the children.

The campaign comes as the latest weekly update today on measles cases in England shows there have been another 69 cases in the past week, bringing the total number of laboratory confirmed measles cases reported since 1 October 2023 to 650.

Its theme and materials, based on insight and feedback from parents in the North West, were developed by UKHSA in partnership with DHSC Marketing, Liverpool City Council, NHS England, NHS North West and NHS Greater Manchester.

Professor Dame Jenny Harries, chief executive of UKHSA, said the campaign is "particularly appealing to parents to check their children's vaccination status and book appointments if their children have missed any immunisations."

She will be in the North West region today to launch the campaign – visiting sites in Manchester and Liverpool. 

She added: "The ongoing measles outbreak we are seeing is a reminder of the very present threat.

"While the majority of the country is protected, there are still high numbers of children in some areas that continue to be unprotected from preventable diseases. It is not just their own health that can suffer, but other unvaccinated people around them such as school friends, family and those in their community could also experience serious infections."

In the four weeks since 29 January 2024, there have been 183 newly confirmed cases, with the highest number of cases reported from the West Midlands with 43 per cent.

Uptake levels of childhood vaccines offered through the NHS in England have been falling over the past decade across all vaccines, including whooping cough, measles, mumps and rubella, polio, meningitis and diphtheria - with England no longer having the levels of population immunity recommended by the World Health Organization that is needed to prevent outbreaks.