Meningitis ACWY Vaccine
The Men ACWY vaccine protects against four different strains of the meningococcal bacteria that cause meningitis and blood poisoning (septicaemia): A, C, W and Y. It is recommended for teenagers and young people attending university, as the disease is most commonly found in the noses and throats of this demographic. The vaccine is also recommended for travellers, however, as infection by the bacteria Neisseria meningitidis is rare but can be fatal.
The highest incidence of Neisseria meningitidis is found on the ‘meningitis belt’ of sub-Saharan Africa, particularly during dry-season. Travellers whose planned activities are likely to put them at an increased risk of meningococcal disease are highly recommended to have the quadrivalent conjugate vaccine (MenACWY) before travel. This is given as a single injection to the upper arm.
Those travelling to Saudi Arabia for the Hajj or Umra are required to show proof of vaccination with the MenACWY vaccine before obtaining a visa.
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