After losing their child to meningitis, Sue and Ian Hession have joined the Meningitis UK charity in calling for a meningitis B vaccine to be included in the childhood immunisation schedule.
When 21-year-old diabetic Andrew Hession first fell ill, he was treated for a diabetic condition. His mother Sue explains: “Andrew was taken to hospital. He was treated for diabetic ketoacidosis, but when the rash appeared on his torso and spread up his body almost as we watched, we knew it was meningitis.
“The doctors were in a panic, suddenly realising what was wrong. Sadly, Andrew died an hour later.”
The vaccine has the potential to save the lives of thousands of children especially in the under-five age group who are most at risk of contracting the disease. Meningitis B affects approximately 1,870 people annually in the UK, with six people dying from the disease each week, many of them children.
One out of every four people who contract the disease and survive will suffer significant on-going health issues.
Health officials are expected to make an announcement on whether a meningitis B vaccination will be added to childhood vaccination schemes later on in the year.
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