Oct 5 2023
World Meningitis Day 2023
This year for World Meningitis Day, we pulled together a remarkable collection of people from around the world to raise awareness and share their story to help light the road ahead to defeat meningitis.
Turning the World Health Organization's (WHO) Global Road Map to Defeat Meningitis by 2030 into reality could save more than 200,000 lives annually and significantly reduce disabilities caused by meningitis. At present, bacterial meningitis kills 1 in 10 people who contract it and causes lifelong disability in 1 in 5 people who survive it.
:: For this episode our guests were asked to respond to these questions:
How were you affected by meningitis?What do you want people to know about meningitis?What are you doing to spread awareness?
:: Our guest are:
Bob Werner (Wisconsin, USA)Elena Moya (Madrid, Spain)Rekha Lakshmanan (Texas, USA)Siobhan Carroll (Galway, Ireland)Vinny Smith (Bristol, England)Bruce Langoulant (Perth, Australia)John B Grimes (Texas, USA)
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:: EPISODE NOTES AND LINKS ::
Bob Werner (Wisconsin, USA)
Becky Werner Meningitis Foundation
Elena Moya (Madrid, Spain)
Asociación Española contra la Meningitis
Rekha Lakshmanan (Texas, USA)
The Immunization Partnership
Siobhan Carroll (Galway, Ireland)
ACT For Meningitis
Vinny Smith (Bristol, England)
Meningitis Research Foundation
Bruce Langoulant (Perth, Australia)
Meningitis Centre Australia
John B Grimes (Texas, USA)
Confederation of Meningitis Organizations (CoMO)
:: What is World Meningitis Day?
World Meningitis Day was started in 2009 by a community of people affected by meningitis. Today it has grown to be a global movement that brings together people from all over the world. Together they highlight the need to raise awareness of meningitis, its signs and symptoms, the vaccines that are available, and that it is an infection that needs global attention and effort to be defeated.
Every year, there are 2.5 million new cases of meningitis. Despite meningitis affecting so many lives, many people don’t know enough about it, or how to protect themselves and their loved ones. A lack of knowledge and limited support means it can also be isolating for people looking to rebuild their lives after meningitis. Seeking community is a very human response and one that offers connection, healing and the opportunity for meaningful change. It is out of this need for community that, in 2004, the first world conference of meningitis organizations was held. It led to the creation of the Confederation of Meningitis Organizations (CoMO), the world’s first international network of meningitis organizations, with members ranging from healthcare professionals to meningitis survivors to bereaved family members.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has developed a global plan to dramatically improve meningitis prevention, diagnosis and treatment, disease monitoring, health advocacy, support and aftercare.
:: The Global Road Map to Defeat Meningitis by 2030
This is a game changer for people at risk of or affected by meningitis. Turning the WHO’s Global Road Map to Defeat Meningitis by 2030 into reality could save more than 200,000 lives annually and significantly reduce disabilities caused by meningitis. At present, bacterial meningitis kills 1 in 10 people who contract it and causes lifelong disability in 1 in 5 people who survive it.
The Road Map was presented at the World Health Assembly in November 2020, where countries decided to take it forward. They did this by voting on a 'resolution'. The Global Road Map to Defeat Meningitis by 2030 sets out a detailed plan to tackle the main causes of acute bacterial meningitis (including meningococcus, pneumococcus, Haemophilus influenzae and group B streptococcus).
The Road Map was developed by WHO with extensive consultation and input from hundreds of global experts, including people directly affected by meningitis, scientists, country representatives, and civil society organizations like Meningitis Research Foundation and the Confederation of Meningitis Organizations.
For more information:
Confederation of Meningitis Organizations
Meningitis Research Foundation