#StopTheSpread of MenW 2015

#StoptheSpread of MenW

The problem


  • Cases of meningococcal W disease are rising steeply
  • Our genome library has identified the rise is due to a particularly harmful ST-11 strain
  • The ST-11 strain is causing severe disease in healthy teenagers and young adults
  • This strain causes a higher death rate than other meningococcal strains

The solution


  • A vaccination programme for 14-18 year olds and university freshers started in the UK on 1 August 2015 
  • Depending on where you live and your age, you will be offered the vaccine at school or you will need to make an appointment to get the vaccine at their GP. See Immunisation Programme in Full (below) for all the details.
  •  Vaccination will give you protection and will also protect other age groups like babies and the elderly

GET THE MENACWY VACCINE

PROTECT YOURSELF AND HELP #STOPTHESPREAD


#StoptheSpread 

Sophie Royce contracted MenW earlier this year


#StoptheSpread warning to youngsters about deadly new strain of meningitis 

UK based international charity Meningitis Research Foundation (MRF) is encouraging UK youngsters to protect themselves against meningitis and septicaemia caused by groups A, C W and Y meningococcal bacteria (MenACWY) through their #StoptheSpread campaign.

Read more of our press release about the vaccine campaign for school leavers and university freshers

Read more of our press release about the vaccine campaign for secondary school pupils

Box 1: Timing of Vaccinations according to age and location

England
  • Those born between 1st September 1996 and 31st August 1997 should have already been contacted by their GP to get the vaccine. If you have not had your invitation, go to your GP and ask for the vaccine.
  • Pupils currently in years 9 to 11 during 2015/16 academic year (born between 1st September 1999 to 31st August 2002) should be getting the vaccine via their school nursing system or other local arrangements. Depending on the school these pupils will have either already been vaccinated in the 2015/16 academic year or will be vaccinated during 2016/17. If you are unsure about whether your child has been vaccinated, speak to the school or your child’s GP.
  • Young people born between 1st September 1997 and 31st August 1998) are currently being offered the vaccine from their GP. 
  • Young people born between 1st September 1998 and 31st August 1999) will be offered the vaccine from their GP after April 2017. 
  • From the academic year 2016/17, year 9 students will be routinely immunised in school.
Wales
  • Those born between 1st September 1996 and 31st August 1997 should have already been contacted by their GP to get the vaccine. If you have not had your invitation, go to your GP and ask for the vaccine.
  • Pupils in school years 9 and 11 during 2015/16 academic year should have received the vaccine via their school nursing system or other local arrangements. If you are unsure about whether your child has been vaccinated, speak to the school nurse or your child’s GP surgery.
  • Pupils in school years 9 and 11 during 2016/17 academic year should get the vaccine via their school nursing system or other local arrangements in the 2016/17 academic year.
  • Young people born between 1st September 1997 and 31st August 1999) are currently being offered the vaccine from their GP. 
  • From the academic year 2016/17, year 9 students will be routinely immunised in school.
Northern Ireland
  • Those born between 2nd July 1996 and 1st July 1997 are eligible for vaccination. If you have not had your vaccination yet, go to your GP and ask for it.
  • Students currently in years 11 and 12 (born between 2nd July 1999 and 1st July 2001) should have received the vaccine at school this academic year.
  • Older children (those born between 2nd July 1997 and 1st July 1999) will be called in for vaccination by their GP
  • Vaccination of everyone born between 2nd July 1997 and 1st July 2001 should be completed by late summer 2016. 
  • From the academic year 2016/17 onwards, year 11 students will be routinely immunised in school.
Scotland
  • Vaccination of those born between 2nd August 1996 and 28th February 2002 was completed by the end of March 2016. 
  • From the academic year 2016/17 onwards, S3 students will be routinely immunised in school.

Secondary School Poster 2016 

Download the poster for England and Wales

Download the poster for Scotland

Download the poster for Northern Ireland

All versions free to order online in the UK

New for 2016

Poster explaining about the MenACWY vaccine and why it is being given for 14 - 18 year olds in school.

Also presents symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia.

UK University Poster 2015

Download the poster

Order online

New

Poster encouraging freshers to get the MenACWY vaccine to protect themselves and #StopTheSpread of a deadly new strain of meningitis in the UK.

Also presents symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia.

What is MenW ST-11?

Most life-threatening meningitis and septicaemia in the UK is caused by the meningococcal bacteria.

Meningococcal bacteria are classified according to structural differences in certain components. The serogroup, e.g. A, B, C, W or Y, is defined by the type of sugar coat, or capsule, that surrounds the bacteria.

Meningococcal bacteria can also be classified according to certain parts of their genetic make-up. This type of classification is known as Multi Locus Sequence Typing (MLST) and it is based on similarities between seven ‘housekeeping’ genes within the meningococcal genome. The advantages of classifying bacteria in this way is that it can provide information about how bacteria are evolving over time and the information can easily be shared between laboratories and researchers. This is one of the reasons why our genome library is such a useful resource.

Genetic sequences which are identical across the seven housekeeping genes will belong to a given sequence type (ST). Meningococcal bacteria belonging to ST-11 have been identified as especially virulent and have been associated with outbreaks that particularly affect healthy people in their prime, namely teenagers and young adults.