People urged to be vigilant as six-year-old dies in suspected outbreak of meningitis

People urged to be vigilant as six-year-old dies in suspected outbreak of meningitis

The national meningitis support and awareness organisation, ACT, is urging the public to be vigilant as a six-year-old girl died after a suspected outbreak in Meath.

Another girl, aged 12, remains seriously ill in Navan.

Speaking on behalf of the organisation, founder and CEO Siobhan Carroll extended her sympathies to the family of the young girl, and warned people to be vigilant if they suspect someone may have meningitis.

"The symptoms may be difficult to spot as many of the early symptoms can be similar to those of a flu, so we ask people to trust their instincts and if they suspect meningitis, seek medical help immediately.”

The signs of Meningitis can include vomiting, fever, headache, stiff neck, dislike to bright lights, severe muscle pain, confusion. In babies, being irritable, refusing to feed, high pitched crying, rapid breathing, cold hands and feet and bulging soft spot on the head.

ACT say that a rash that does not fade under pressure is caused by septicaemia, but you should never wait for the rash as it can be a very late sign or may never appear.

People can seek more information by calling 091 380058, emailing actformeningitis@gmail.com or visiting ACT for Meningitis on Facebook www.facebook.com/ACTforMeningitis/.

The Meningitis Research Foundation has also published a free helpline number for people concerned after the outbreak. You can contact them on 1800 41 33 44, or visit their website www.meningitis.org.

- Digital Desk

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