The MRF Blog

Opinion, analysis, behind the scenes information and the latest news from the front line of the fight against meningitis and septicaemia.

Our latest blogs

About the diseases

As the COVID-19 outbreak continues, our Support Manager discusses dealing with health anxiety.
As meningitis and sepsis are deadly responses to infection, often caused by the same bacteria, prevention, treatment and support for both are intertwined.
Our Director of Communications explores the risk of climate change in relation to meningitis.
As we progress closer to a world free from meningitis, we look back at the history of this disease.
Dr Fiona McGill answers one of our most frequently asked questions.
Professor James Stuart explains how meningitis travels between people.
As winter hits, we get asked a lot about why the number of people getting meningitis increases over this time of year here in the UK and Ireland.
What is sepsis? What is septicaemia? Are they the same? Our Director of Communications explains.

Prevention, detection and treatment

Prof. Dominique Caugant tells us about cutting edge sequencing technology that’s being used to trace a killer.
Currently, a lumbar puncture is the only way to confirm a case of meningitis. Our Support and Membership Manager explains the procedure.
The rash does not always appears in cases of meningitis, and the word ‘rash’ itself may be misleading. So, what actually is it?
Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is the leading cause of bacterial meningitis in newborn babies. The GBS3 trial hopes to help combat this infection.
For World Antibiotic Awareness Week, MRF Chief Executive Vinny Smith discusses the threat of antibiotic resistance.
We asked our audience why 'vaccines are vital' to them, based on personal experience.
Rachel Davis, a third year student at the University of Bristol, asks why some students don't get their free MenACWY vaccine.
In this guest post from PATH, Dr Mark Alderson explains how PATH are innovating to help defeat meningitis.
Vaccines are one of the most effective public health interventions in history, saving billions of lives since the first vaccine was produced in 1798. So how exactly do they work?
Vaccine hesitancy is one of the biggest threats to global health. But why does it happen?
On March 11th, WHO officially declared the 2020 outbreak of COVID-19 a 'pandemic'. What does this mean?
Dr Matthew Thompson explains the challenges faced by medical professionals in diagnosing meningitis.
MRF Evidence and Policy Manager (Prevention), Claire Wright, discusses the pros and cons of making vaccination compulsory in the fight against meningitis and septicaemia
Should you respond when you see vaccine misinformation online? If so, how?
A fear of needles can be a barrier to getting life saving vaccines. Here are some tips on how to cope.

After meningitis

Mike Davies contracted bacterial meningitis in 2017. This is his story.
A guest blog post from the UK Infantile Spasms Trust explaining IS and why children who have survived meningitis are at risk.
Charlotte Hannibal, MRF Ambassador, lost her lower legs to meningitis aged 18. In this blog, her Dawn mother talks about Charlotte's experience of learning to drive again.
In her role as MRF’s Support and Membership Manager, Cat Shehu provides comprehensive support to anyone impacted by meningitis. In this blog, she reveals her personal experience of the disease, and how this guides her in leading the MRF support team.
Tinnitus is a possible after-effect of meningitis. This guest post from the British Tinnitus Association explains more.
To mark Children’s Mental Health Week, Support Manager Cat discusses the help available for children affected by meningitis.
Many of the after effects of meningitis aren't immediately obvious. In this blog, Support Manager Cat explains how we can help.
The world of prosthetic limbs is changing fast. Erin Gilbert, our Community Fundraiser, looks into the latest developments aiming to improve the lives of amputees throughout the world, and explains how Meningitis Research Foundation can help those who've lost limbs to meningitis and septicaemia.
MRF investigates the impact of social media on meningitis survivors.
MRF Information and Support Officer, Katherine Carter reports on our latest family day for those affected by meningitis and septicaemia

Our work

In March 2020 MRF's Chief Exec Vinny published a candid blog considering what COVID-19 might mean for our future and the future of meningitis. Now, one year on, he takes a look a back at the past 12 months.
As the outbreak of coronavirus continues, CEO Vinny reflects on how this may impact our work.
MRF Chief Executive Vinny Smith explains how we're going to defeat meningitis by 2030.
Our work directly helped to HALVE cases of deadly MenW meningitis in the UK, saving countless lives. Here's how we did it.
We've invested nearly £20 million into meningitis research since 1989. Now, we're looking back at our most incredible achievements so far.
Meningitis is a deadly and complicated disease - so is it actually possible to truly "defeat" it? Find out here.
The 'Strengthening Patient Voices' project was launched in 2018 between MRF and CoMO.
Kirstie was told her daughter had an ear infection, but her instincts told her it was something else. She explains why the theme for Meningitis Awareness Week 2018 is so important.
On the eve of her retirement, our Regional Director Diane McConnell reflects on how far MRF has come.


We spoke to Elaine about why Mason is a superhero to his family
Sandra, Robbie's grandmother, tells us why he is their hero.
Will Storey is taking on an ultramathon all the way from Ullapool to Skye Bridge, in aid of MRF. In his own words, Will explains why he’s taking on this challenge.
Esther, Events Manager, tells us what she's learned about running for TeamMRF in her five years at the charity.
Chloe Milloy takes us behind the scenes at Superhero Tri, with MRF as a proud Charity Partner.
Buy hope for families
Buy hope for families
90p/€1 produces a detailed ‘Your Guide’ information pack for parents when a child is recovering from meningitis.
Elaine Devine
Director of Advocacy, Communications and Support

I’m Elaine and I joined MRF in January 2022. I previously worked for a global research publisher as Digital Communications Director, leading a team of specialists in campaigning, social media, multimedia, PR and digital content (all of which is very similar to what I am now doing at MRF).

I’ve worked in the worlds of research, education and charities for all of my career, experience which marries perfectly with my role at MRF. I’ve won national prizes for my campaign work, written for outlets from The Guardian to academic journals, created podcasts and white papers, ran researcher workshops and presented at more national and international conferences than I can remember. I’m very much looking forward to bringing all of this experience to MRF and seeing what we can achieve as we strive to defeat meningitis by 2030.

Tel: 0333 405 6262