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Measles cases at highest point since 2006 as outbreaks continue to spread

BMJ 2019; 366 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l5141 (Published 13 August 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;366:l5141

Government publishes two sets of measles data

Following my recent letters [1] I have been comparing two sets of measles data published by Public Health England: the data in the table published under the title "Measles notifications and confirmed cases by oral fluid testing 2013 to 2019" and those published in separate documents under the title "Measles, mumps and rubella: laboratory confirmed cases in England". Here are the figures for comparison from the respective sources for the four quarters of the five years 2014 to 2018:

2014
Q1 69/70
Q2 11/16
Q3 8/11
Q4 5/4

2015
Q1 18/20
Q2 16/33
Q3 13/15
Q4 12/23

2016
Q1: 36/67
Q2: 117/167
Q3  137/243
Q4   28/37

2017
Q1   18/17
Q2    42/64
Q3    22/36
Q4    42/149

2018
Q1   91/265
Q2  359/421
Q3  67/143
Q4   94/97

These figures are sometimes close, but sometimes vary wildly and there are 700 more cases in one set of data than the other (approx 1900 cases versus 1200), mostly in the last three years. Some clarification would be welcome.

[1] John Stone, 'Re: Measles cases at highest point since 2006 as outbreaks continue to spread', 23 August 2019, https://www.bmj.com/content/366/bmj.l5141/rr-1

[2] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/measles-confirmed-cases/measl...  

{3] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/measles-mumps-and-rubella-lab...

[4] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/measles-mumps-and-rubella-lab...

[5] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/measles-mumps-and-rubella-lab...

[6] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[7] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[8] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[9] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[10] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[11] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[12] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[13] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[14] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[15] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[16] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[17] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[18] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[19] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[20] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[21] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

[22] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

Competing interests: No competing interests

04 September 2019
John Stone
UK Editor
AgeofAutism.com
London N22