Improved protection against MenC in Ireland
04 September 2014
From 2015, Irish children will benefit from longer lasting protection by getting a booster dose of the MenC vaccine at 12-13 years of age. The MenC booster will be given as part of the school immunisation programme to children in their 1st year of second level school in the second or third term of the academic year (from January 2015).
Cases of meningitis and septicaemia are much less common nowadays, thanks to the MenC vaccine, which has saved thousands of lives across Europe. However, we now know that the immunity the MenC vaccine provides weakens over time, so that MenC is on the rise again. This is why the new booster is necessary.
The National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC) has recommended changing the MenC immunisation schedule in order to maintain the best protection against MenC disease in Ireland. The programme will be amended from three doses at 4, 6 and 13 months to two doses at 4 and 13 months and an adolescent booster. As teenagers are the main carriers of meningococcal bacteria, immunising this age group will maintain protection against MenC disease amongst the population by preventing the spread of harmful bacteria. More information on MenC vaccination in Ireland
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