VoICE Immunization Evidence: Long term disability
Children who survive bacterial meningitis are at high risk of lifelong disabilities as a result of the infection.
Key Evidence: In a study of data from England & Wales, Denmark and the US, it was shown that measles infection suppresses the immune system for up to 3 years after infection, increasing the risk of death due to other childhood infections during that time. This means that prevention of measles significantly impacts overall health during critical childhood years.
Mina, M.J., Metcalf, C.J. de Swart, R.L., et al 2015. Long-term measles-induced immunomodulation increases overall childhood infectious disease mortality. Science. 348(6235):694-9.
Key Evidence: In Gambia, 58% of children who survived a bout of pneumococcal meningitis “had clinical sequelae; half of them had major disability preventing normal adaptation to social life” (mental retardation, hearing loss, motor abnormalities, seizures).
Goetghebuer, T., West, T.E., Wermenbol, V., et al 2000. Outcome of meningitis caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae type b in children in The Gambia. Tropical Medicine and International Health. 5(3):207-13.
Key Evidence:A systematic literature review analyzing data from 21 African countries revealed that bacterial meningitis is associated with high case fatality and frequent neurophysiological sequelae. Pneumococcal and Hib meningitis contribute to one third of disease related mortality. They also cause clinically evident sequalae in 25% of survivors prior to hospital discharge. The three main causes of bacterial meningitis- Hemophilus influenzae; Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) and Neisseria meningitidis (meningococcus) are vaccine preventable, routine use of conjugate vaccines have potential for significant health and economic benefits.
Ramakrishnan, M., Ulland, A.J., Steinhardt, L.C., et al 2009. Sequelae due to bacterial meningitis among African children: a systematic literature review. BMC Medicine. 7:47.