A young girl from the Central Coast has been diagnosed with meningococcal disease.
The Central Coast Local Health District has announced the confirmed case today, which is the third across the region this year.
The toddler, 2, was stabilised at Gosford Hospital before being transferred to the Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick, where she remains in a stable condition.
The Local Health District is reminding the community to be aware of the symptoms of the disease.
In July a woman, 65, from the coast was diagnosed with the W strain of the disease after becoming unwell visiting family in Victoria.
The first case for the region this year was in May with a woman, 81, confirmed with the Y strain of the disease. The woman made a full recovery.
Central Coast Local Health District Director Public Health Dr Peter Lewis said close contacts of the two-year-old had received clearance antibiotics to reduce the risk of it being spread.
“Meningococcal bacteria are not easily spread from person-to-person and the bacteria do not survive well outside the human body,” Dr Lewis said.
“Although meningococcal disease is very uncommon in NSW it can be a very serious illness and it is important that the community are aware of the symptoms and seek early medical care.”
Symptoms of meningococcal disease may include sudden onset of fever, headache, neck stiffness, joint pain, a rash of red-purple spots or bruises, dislike of bright lights nausea and vomiting.
The bacteria is spread between people in the secretions from the back of the nose and throat. This generally requires close and prolonged contact with a person carrying the bacteria who is usually completely well.
Vaccination for meningococcal disease, types A, C, W and Y, is available on the National Immunisation Program for infants at 12 months of age and adolescents in Year 10.
Any adolescents aged 15 to 19 years who miss the vaccine in school are eligible for a free vaccine from their GP.
People can seek advice from their GPs on vaccination against strains of meningococcal disease.
SOURCE: Daily Telegraph