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Meningitis vaccination: How does it work

With 1 shot in your upper arm you are protected for a minimum of 5 years. You can’t get sick from the Meningococcus and you can’t infect others. A thin needle is used to inject a liquid into your arm. This liquid we call vaccine. This vaccine prevents you from getting sick.

The vaccine contains particles of the 4 meningococcal bacteria type A, C, W and Y. You cannot get meningococcal disease from the vaccine, because these are particles of dead meningococcal bacteria. From the moment the vaccine is absorbed in your body, your body can ‘recognize’ these meningococcal bacteria. This means that if you are infected with one of these bacteria after the injection, your body will immediately produce antibodies against the bacteria. In this way they are destroyed before you get sick or can infect someone else.

Who gets an invitation for a vaccination?

If your child was born in 2001, 2002 or between 1 January and 1 May 2004, it will get an invitation for a vaccination in March or April this spring. If born in 2003 or 2005, it will receive an invitation for a vaccination in May or June.

Invitation are always sent by mail (post). At the end of 2018, young people born between 1 May and 31 December 2004 will have already received an invitation. At the end of 2019, everyone who is 14 to 18 years old has had an invitation for a vaccination against meningococcal disease.

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