56,000 young people called to be vaccinated in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes

The Regional Health Agency calls for mass vaccination of young people after twelve cases, including one death, recorded for a year.

After twelve cases, including one death, of invasive meningococcal B infection with a new variant identified for almost a year, the Regional Health Agency (ARS) of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes called on 56,000 young people to to be vaccinated, the establishment told AFP on Friday August 12.

Meningitis is a serious disease, which can cause permanent sequelae and even death.“, explained to AFP Dr Anne-Sophie Ronnaux-Baron, head of the regional health monitoring center at ARS Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes. We therefore sent 56,000 letters to policyholders aged 16 to 24 – the population most frequently affected by the variant – and to the parents of babies aged 0-2 years, as part of a massive vaccination campaign.“said Anne-Sophie Ronnaux-Baron, confirming information from local media.

At the end of July, two infected people were identified, bringing to twelve the number of cases detected in four departments: Savoie (Chambéry and its surroundings), Ain, Rhône and Isère. Despite the death of a young person among these cases, “to date, we have no particular indication that this variant would be more dangerous or more contaminating“said the doctor. The meningococcal B bacterium is transmitted by prolonged contact with a healthy carrier of the germ. It is transmitted by coughing and spittle. The infection causes fever, headache with vomiting, stiff neck, and red or purplish spots (purpura) may appear. Meningitis vaccination has been included in the 2022 vaccination calendar since April and the number of deaths linked to meningococcal infection out of the number of overall meningitis cases is around 10%, according to the ARS.

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