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Health extends age range for meningitis vaccine to 19



People up to 19 years old who have not taken any dose of meningococcal C vaccine can look for one of the routine vaccination rooms in the Federal District to receive the immunizer. The measure also applies to professionals in public and private health networks. The forecast is that the expansion of the age group will be maintained until February 2023, when the vaccine will again be indicated only for children under 12 months.

Vaccination coverage in the DF is low: 84.5% in 2019; 83.81%, in 2020; and 75.8%, in 2021, the lowest rate recorded for children up to 12 months. The target established by the Ministry of Health is 95% of the target audience.

The manager of Vaccine-preventable Diseases of the Department of Health, Renata Brandão, recalls that anyone who has taken any dose of the meningococcal ACWY vaccine, currently provided for in the immunization schedule for children aged 11 and 12, should not receive a new immunization. The orientation is to consult the vaccine card.

Meningitis can cause sequelae and be fatal. Among adults, the mortality rate can be as high as 10% if treatment is delayed. In children, there is a chance of affecting cognitive and motor development, even presenting epileptic syndrome.

Meningitis is the name given to infections in the meninges, the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord. The meningococcal C vaccine specifically protects against serogroup C of the bacterium neisseria meningitidis, also known as meningococcus. An infected person can transmit the disease through droplets and secretions. The main symptoms are: fever, stiff neck, severe headache, vomiting and, in some cases, neurological changes.

With information from the Department of Health of the DF

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