Meningococcal vaccine drive in Vic-NewsCO

February 7, 2017

The Turnbull government has failed to protect Australians from the deadly meningococcal W strain, Victoria’s health minister says.

The state government says it will deliver a free, one-year, school-based vaccination program for meningococcal W for 15- to 19-year-olds until the “federal government gets it act together and funds a national response”.

“This is a national responsibility and once again we are seeing Malcolm Turnbull and the Liberals vacating the space when it comes to immunisation while we step in and cover the shortfall,” Health Minister Jill Hennessy said on Wednesday.

In recent years, the prevalence of the W strain – one of the six main meningococcal strains – has increased significantly across Australia, with Victoria experiencing 48 cases in 2016 compared with 17 the previous year.

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