Cost of Meningitis
CoMO and its members understand that meningitis is a traumatic experience for survivors and families.
As well as the potential for loss of life or acquisition of lifelong impairments such as brain damage or limb loss, even those less affected are often left with behavioural, emotional and educational problems. All of this creates a societal cost in addition to the personal cost to individuals, their support networks and bereaved families.
Research projects in the UK and France have been undertaken to understand the long-term cost of meningitis.
Country based research
Results showed that it costs the UK government between £3-4.5 million to care for severe cases over their lifetime.
The project fronted a major campaign that generated a petition of nearly 17,000 signatures calling on the UK government to pursue the widest and earliest implementation of vaccines to prevent the diseases. Results from the study were also published in a peer reviewed journal.
As an extension of the work undertaken in the UK, the MRF have helped Association Audrey in France with a similar exercise, recently revealing that the cost of caring for survivors with severe disability such as amputations or brain damage over a lifetime can range from 3.4 to 4.6 million Euros. The majority of this is paid for by National Health Insurance and publicly funded organisations the figures are in line with findings from the UK study. Association Audrey uses the findings of this study to raise awareness of the true of cost of meningitis to families and nations.
This is a start! More needs to be done to understand the true cost of meningitis, which will add greater strength to advocacy efforts worldwide.
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