Initial symptoms include a high fever, poor feeding, vomiting and lethargy. The disease can go on to cause septicemia (blood poisoning) which can lead to the non-blanching rash typical of meningitis.
The vaccine has now been introduced into the childhood vaccines for new born babies. There is however a number of children who have missed the ‘cut off’ point under the NHS due to age and therefore are not covered for free under the NHS. The vaccine consists of two doses, two months apart. Younger children under 2 years of age need one extra booster after a year.