Adults Get It Too
Our latest campaign, Adults Get It Too, seeks to inform and educate adults of the risks they face from meningitis and the actions they can take to look after themselves.
A survey carried out as part of the campaign reveals that 95% of people aged over 55 do not consider meningitis and septicaemia to be a threat, despite the fact that the risk of bacterial meningitis rises in older adults. The study also highlights the worrying fact that three-quarters of this group are not confident in recognising the signs and symptoms of the disease.
Vaccines that protect against some types of meningitis and septicaemia are given to babies, children and young people, but most over-55s will not have had these vaccines. Find out more about the campaign here.
As part of our campaign to raise awareness in adults about the risk they face from meningitis, we are asking all MPs to help us to highlight these issues in their constituencies. We ask them to do this by writing to GPs asking them to do more to inform and motivate people in their care and to assist in this, we have produced a template letter for use by MPs.
We have also produced a press release for MPs who wish to support the Adults Get It Too campaign to send to their local newspapers or radio stations.
Download them here:
Pledge your support
We are asking MPs to support our Adults Get It Too campaign. If, as an MP, you would like to pledge to call upon GPs, pharmacists, councillors, and community leaders to encourage adults to learn the symptoms of meningitis please fill in the form below.
MPs support pledge form
MenACWY vaccine uptake
In September 2015 we achieved a significant milestone in our fight to beat meningitis with the introduction of the meningococcal group B vaccine (MenB) to all children aged 1 as part of the childhood immunisation programme.
Momentous in its delivery, this important vaccine was quickly accompanied by the introduction of the meningococcal ACWY vaccine, following a reported increase in MenW cases amongst teenagers. This vaccination programme featured a vaccination for both schools and universities.
- Fair access to vaccines
For many parents, the announcement of the MenB vaccine for UK babies was a bittersweet moment, as they realised that their baby fell outside the government’s defined age range for immunisation. Since its introduction we have campaigned to extend this vaccine to all children up to the age of five, and have played a critical part in securing the UK’s largest parliamentary e-petition and debate on this subject. In its response, Government used current costs of vaccines and an important review of vaccine cost effectiveness to refuse the call of the 823,000 petitioners.
The long overdue cost effectiveness report was published in January 2018 and having assessed it, we are deeply concerned that it could have significant consequences to vaccines in the UK. Read for our response to this report here.
- Help us protect Students from MenW
In addition to broadening the protection offered by the MenB vaccine, we remain committed to protecting young people from MenW, cases of which continue to grow. Whilst the school programme has seen around 80% of those eligible receiving the MenACWY vaccination, the university programme has been less successful with take up rates in the region of 38%.
The good news is that young people going to university in September 2018 will have been vaccinated at school and whilst on the surface this is great news, it does conceal the fact that the majority of this age group will not have been vaccinated against MenB. We are concerned about meningitis complacency and confusion amongst young people, and are working with parents and universities to drive home the important message that they are not protected against all strains of the disease.
As part of our campaign to keep young people safe from MenW we are asking all MPs to highlight this issue in their constituencies by writing to universities and asking them to do more to inform and motivate the young people in their care. To assist in this we have produced a template letter for use by MPs.
Download it here:
As a part of our ongoing commitment to keep MPs updated on key issues around meningitis we publish regular MP briefing documents and hold annual briefing events in Westminster. Attended by families directly affected by the disease, these events offer an ideal opportunity to hear first-hand how this devastating disease changed their lives and futures.
Get involved help us reduce the burden of meningitis by supporting our policy priorities.
You can also help us ensure that meningitis stays on the health agenda by:
- Asking parliamentary questions
- Raising the profile of every meningitis case that occurs in your constituency
- Taking part in our campaigns
- Attending parliamentary briefings and events
- Meeting with families affected by meningitis in your constituency
If you’d like to learn more about how you can make a difference, we’d love to hear from you or your office. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org