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Counting the Cost of Meningitis

Counting the Cost of Meningitis

20 September 2012

Chris Head, Chief Executive of MRF and four members of the charity visited 10 Downing Street on Monday 17 September to hand in a petition calling on the UK Government to pursue the widest and earliest implementation of vaccines to prevent all types of meningitis and septicaemia.

MRF’s ‘Counting the Cost of Meningitis’ project estimates the life-long costs to the UK Government of medical treatment and ongoing care for a person seriously disabled by the disease are around £3million. Last year (2011) MRF launched the petition during Meningitis Awareness Week and members across the UK have worked tirelessly collecting 16,700 names.

Meningitis and septicaemia affect around 3,600 people in the UK and Ireland annually. They are deadly diseases that can strike anyone without warning, killing one in ten, and leaving a quarter of survivors with life altering effects as severe as deafness, brain damage and loss of limbs.

Christopher Head, Chief Executive of MRF said: “I am delighted our members Robbie and Jill Jones from Durham, Diana Man from Tunbridge Wells and Onaiza Fice from Harrow could join us at Number 10. They have worked so hard on our behalf to get names on our petition. Their passion is typical of so many of our members who have been affected by these diseases. There is currently no vaccine for meningococcal B disease which is responsible for the majority of cases of disease in the UK and Ireland. Thanks to our members and donors, we have helped fund research into the discovery and testing of potential MenB vaccines - which we estimate could prevent more than three cases a day and reduce the potential burden of these diseases on thousands more families in the future.”

Photo caption left to right: Onaiza Fice, Chris Head (CEO of MRF), Jill & Robbie Jones from Durham and Diana Man from Tunbridge Wells.

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