Meningococcal C Disease (Men C) Immunisation
From 14 May 2018, the Ministry aims to immunise all children between 1 to 19 years of age. This immunisation program has the following objectives:
- Protecting those most at risk of disease (children under the age of 5, and teenagers).
- Protecting those most at risk of dying from the disease (children under the age of 5).
- Reducing spread of the disease by lowering the amount of people in the community that carry the bacteria, causing what is known as ‘herd immunity’.
All children can get immunised under parental consent
All children aged from 1 to 19 years will be immunised with Men C vaccine. Children attending schools will be immunised at their primary/secondary schools, kindergartens and special needs schools.
Those children who miss immunisation at their school are required to go to their nearest healthy facility to receive immunisation.
For children at tertiary level, working or staying home and are within the 1 to 19 years of age can also get immunised at their nearest health facility.
On immunisation day all children will be required to provide signed parental consent form prior to receiving immunisation. Consent forms will be provided to children at their schools or can be downloaded from this page.
Immunisation will initially commence in the Central and Western division at the following medical subdivisions:
- Serua Namosi
Roll out will continue at other parts of the Western Division, the Northern and Eastern Division in the coming months.
Men C vaccine is safe
Like all medications and vaccinations, conjugate monovalent Men C vaccine also has some minor side effects such as soreness, redness and swelling around the injected area, fever, loss of appetite and headache. These side effects are very minor and lasts a short time and do not lead to any long-term problems. Any serious side effects are extremely rare.
Once immunised it takes a month (4 weeks) for your body to build protection/ immunity against the meningococcal disease. It is recommended that you continue to practice proper hygiene to keep yourself and your family protected. You can do this by:
- Covering your mouth and nose with tissue or handkerchief when coughing and sneezing
- Disposing tissue in the bin, washing handkerchief daily with soap and water
- After coughing or sneezing, wash your hands with soap and water
- Don’t share eating utensils, cups/glasses/water bottles, drinks at social gathering (taki), cigarettes, or kava bowls.
Parents and guardians, get your child immunised!