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Immunisation against Meningococcal Disease

The Department of Health is recommending that all first year students starting at higher education institutions this autumn should be offered a single dose of the currently available meningococcal MCC vaccine before going to university.  Many students will already have been immunised as part of the UK Government’s Campaign.

However, if you are a first year undergraduate student, regardless of where you live,

OR you are not a first year undergraduate student but will be living in a Hall of Residence this year,

AND you have not yet been immunised, you are advised to do so via your local GP without delay.  It will cost you nothing.

If you are unsure in any way about whether you need to be immunised, discuss the matter with your local GP immediately.

Please remember that immunisation is effective only against the C strain of the disease.  It does not confer protection against the B strain.  It is therefore essential that you remain vigilant for symptoms of the disease.  Full information on this is contained in the student handbook.

Remember, be vigilant.




Some Basic Medical Facts

Meningococcal Meningitis and Septicaemia

Meningococcal meningitis and septicaemia are rare illnesses.  The onset can be sudden and the consequences can be rapidly fatal.  It is therefore important to be aware of the symptoms.

Early symptoms may be similar to those of ‘flu’ or of a hangover:

  • Feeling feverish
  • Vomiting
  • Severe headache
  • Stiff neck, back and joint pains

If any of the following symptoms develop:

  • Rash of tiny red bruises that doesn’t fade under pressure
  • Severe dislike of light
  • Disorientation or coma

Get medical help urgently – early treatment saves lives.

More information on the symptoms of meningitis can be found here .

Students are encouraged, if they are not feeling well, to consult their General Practitioner.  

If you are unsure, or if you are concerned, it is important that you contact your GP.

If you need further information or advice about meningitis, contact one of these 24-hour Meningitis Helplines:

Meningitis Research Foundation:  Tel. No. 0808 80 03 344

24hr Meningitis Trust helpline 0808 80 10 388 (Freephone)


Further detailed information can also be obtained from the following web sites:

 Meningitis Research Foundation  

 Meningitis Trust