Meningococcal disease is a serious and potentially life-threatening infection that can progress rapidly. Even if people survive, they may experience long-term and severe consequences such as limb amputation, hearing loss, seizures, brain inflammation, lung infection and permanent skin disfigurement.
Meningococcal vaccines protect against the bacteria that cause meningococcal disease.
Book your appointment at a time and place that's convenient for you. Many of our pharmacies are open seven days a week, including some evenings.
What is Meningococcal disease ?
Meningococcal disease is a bacterial infection which present similarly to other flu-like illnesses with approximately 80% of cases presenting with a rash that does not blanch (become pale/go white) when pressed. In New Zealand, the infection is mostly caused by the groups A,B,C,W,Y progressing to meningitis and septicaemia in severe cases. The bacteria is transmitted from person to person by saliva, e.g kissing and can lead to severe complications.
Why should I get Meningococcal Vaccination ?
Meningitis causes inflammation of the membrane around the brain and spinal cord and septicaemia is the poisoning of the blood which can lead to the loss of limbs. It is very common in children under the age of 5, teenagers and young adults, especially those that are living in close living accommodations.
How to get Meningococcal Vaccination ?
Pharmacy now offers funded vaccines against meningococcal disease for those that are eligible, this includes those that are at high-risk of catching the disease (young adults living in close living situations, e.g halls of residence).
There are two vaccines available to cover majority of serogroups that currently present in New Zealand:
1. Bexsero (Meningococcal B Vaccine) protects against the B serogroup
2. MenQuadfi (Meningococcal ACWY) which protects against the ACWY serogroups.
Both are recommend being given at the same time for the best coverage against Meningococcal disease.