Health care delivery and outcome: a confidential enquiry into meningococcal disease in children

Treatment; Imperial College School of Medicine at St Mary's Hospital and Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, London.

Scientific version
  • Researchers:
    Dr Linda Haines, Dr Roderick McFaul, Professor Michael Levin, Professor Richard Cooke
  • Start Date:
    01 January 1997
  • Category:
  • Location:
    Imperial College School of Medicine at St Mary's Hospital, London, UK, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, London, UK

This is the first study of meningococcal disease in children that has attempted to define the pathway of the disease and determine critical stages at which recognition and treatment can change the course of the illness and save the life of a child.

By collecting information from parents, GPs and hospitals, researchers are compiling a comprehensive picture of the way meningococcal disease is recognised. Strategies for informing the public about the signs and symptoms of the disease are also considered.

The study has gathered information about the treatment of every child under 17 years of age who died of meningococcal disease in England, Wales and Northern Ireland over a 15 month period, as well as information about the treatment of survivors as controls.

Many members of the Foundation have already made invaluable contributions to this work. Expert panels are now assessing information about the care these children received. The researchers aim to show which aspects of care are life-saving and which are associated with death and disability. In this way, features of clinical treatment shown to be linked to poor outcome.

Read our news releases about this project:

Meningitis 'Red Flag' Symptoms

Pre-hospital antibiotics and preventing deaths from meningitis and septicaemia

Research identifies early warning signs of meningitis and septicaemia

Avoidable child deaths from meningitis and septicaemia

Results from this study have been published in scientific journals as follows:

Ninis N, Phillips C, Bailey L, Pollock JL, Nadel S, Britto J, Maconochie I, Winrow A, Coen PG, Booy R, Levin M.
The role of healthcare delivery in the outcome of meningococcal disease in children: case-control study of fatal and non-fatal cases.
BMJ 2005 Jun 25;330(7506):1475.

Thompson M, Ninis N, Perera R, Mayon-White R, Phillips C, Bailey L, Harnden A, Mant D, Levin M,
Clinical recognition of meningococcal disease in children and adolescents.
Lancet 2006 Feb 4;367(9508):397-403.

Harnden A, Ninis N, Thompson M, Perera R, Levin M, Mant D, Mayon-White R.
Parenteral penicillin for children with meningococcal disease before hospital admission: case-control study.
BMJ 2006 Jun 3;332(7553):1295-8. Epub 2006 Mar 22..

meningitis & septicaemia can kill in hours!

People who are faced with meningitis and septicaemia have to act fast to help save a life.

Ask the Expert
Professor Chris Tang

Why are MRF continuing to fund MenB research?

Read more