Intended for healthcare professionals

Research Article

Factors affecting uptake of measles, mumps, and rubella immunisation.

British Medical Journal 1993; 307 doi: (Published 17 July 1993) Cite this as: British Medical Journal 1993;307:168
  1. J Li,
  2. B Taylor
  1. Department of Community Child Health, Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine, London.


    OBJECTIVE--To study factors affecting uptake of measles, mumps, and rubella immunisation. DESIGN--Cohort study using data from computerised child health systems. SETTING--10 health districts in North East Thames and North West Thames regions. SUBJECTS--7841 children born in January to March 1990 and resident in the districts up till the end of October 1991. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--Overall uptake of measles, mumps, and rubella immunisation, variation of uptake among groups of children, and odds ratio of being vaccinated against measles, mumps, and rubella. RESULTS--The overall uptake rate of measles, mumps, and rubella immunisation for the study cohort in the 10 districts was 82%. Wide variation was identified among children with different demographic characteristics. Lower uptake was associated with absent or incomplete primary immunisation, including omission of pertussis vaccine. Other factors affecting uptake included the type of resident district, birth order, where registered for immunisation (general practitioner or clinic), and one parent family status. CONCLUSIONS--Many districts have difficulties in meeting the 90% target for measles, mumps, and rubella immunisation, mainly because of the characteristics of their local population. To increase overall coverage, the health service should target families with adverse factors, especially those whose children have missed previous immunisations.