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Infection advice / Men ACWY vaccine

The Men ACWY vaccine protects against infection caused by meningococcal groups A, C, W and Y. These are the most common Meningococcal groups in the UK. These bacteria can cause two very serious illnesses, meningitis and septicaemia.

The Men ACWY vaccine was introduced in September 2015 and replaced the Men C vaccine (meningococcal group C) in response to an increase in Group W (MenW) disease.

Due to the success of the Men C NHS childhood vaccination programme, the programme changed as of July 2016 so children now only receive the Hib/Men C vaccine at one year of age and the Men ACWY at 14 years of age.

There is a Men ACWY catch-up vaccination programme for first-time students up to the age of 25. Young teenagers and 'fresher' students going to university for the first time are advised to have the vaccine as those between the ages of 15 and 19 are at higher risk of contracting meningococcal disease, especially MenW.

  • These leaflets explain more about meningococcal disease and the Men ACWY vaccination for students in years 9 to 13 and new university students.
  • This NHS leaflet   for university students, particularly freshers, describes the signs and symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia.
  • These NHS posters provide information on meningococcal disease and the Men ACWY vaccination for students in schools and sixth form and new university students.
  • Further information on the Men ACWY vaccine can be found at NHS Choices  .
  • You can also watch a case study about meningitis on our patient stories page here.

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