Meningococcal C Outbreak In Melbourne & Victoria
- 8 cases of Meningococcal C Infections In Victoria. The majority in gay and bisexual men.
- Meningococcal disease can cause serious illness and death in 10% of cases
- Meningococcal disease can be prevented with vaccination
- Vic Health will offer all men who have sex with men free vaccination with Quadvalant vaccine (A,C,W,Y) from 11th Dec 2017 to 30th June 2018
- People with higher risk are encouraged to be vaccinated as soon as possible. This includes:
- People living with HIV
- People who have had their spleen removed
- People on immunosuppressive drugs
- People with decreased immune function or stem cell transplant
Your GP or local gay men’s health centre will be able to help supply the Menigococcal vaccination
Meningitis is a serious bacterial infection that can cause rapid, serious illness which can be fatal for 10% of infected people. Melbourne’s recent outbreak has been almost exclusively in men who have sex with other men.
Victoria Health has decided to offer free meningococcal vaccination to all gay and bisexual men in Victoria. I urge you to talk with your doctor or local sexual health centre to discuss if the vaccine is for you.
For men living with HIV this vaccination is highly recommended no matter your CD4 count.
Anyone who feels suddenly unwell with fevers, rash, headache, photophobia or light sensitivity, muscle aches and pains should seek urgent medical review. Timely medical care could save a life!
Symptoms Of Meningococcal Infection
Symptoms of invasive meningococcal disease in older children and adults can include:
- loss of appetite
- neck stiffness
- discomfort when looking at bright lights (photophobia)
- nausea and/or vomiting
- aching or sore muscles
- painful or swollen joints
- difficulty walking
- general malaise
- moaning, unintelligible speech
- rash of red or purple pinprick spots or larger bruises.
More information about this recent outbreak as well as the vaccinations available can be viewed here: Victoria Health Menigococcal C Alert