While meningococcal disease is rare, it is potentially life threatening. Up to one in ten of those infected may die, and around one in five may suffer serious long-term disabilities including brain damage, deafness or loss of limbs.

Meningococcal disease is caused by a bacterial infection of the blood and/or membranes that line the spinal cord and brain. It can progress rapidly, beginning with symptoms such as fever and irritability that are easily mistaken for a
common cold. The distinctive meningococcal rash is an advanced symptom of blood infection, which may or may not occur. Most children survive meningococcal disease, but if it is not diagnosed and treated quickly it can lead to serious long-term disability or death within 24 hours.

Babies and children (under five) are most at risk, followed by adolescents, with the highest incidence of meningococcal disease in babies 0-1 year of age.

Vaccination is the only truly effective way to help prevent meningococcal disease.
No single vaccine can protect against all strains of meningococcal disease, but different vaccines are available to protect against the most common ones
(A, B, C, W and Y).

New Street Medical Centre offers government funded and private meningococcal vaccinations. Please call the clinic on 9595 9777 to book in with the clinic nurse today.