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Educating About Meningitis

Understand the symptoms of this devastating disease and how to help prevent it

NMA was founded by parents whose children either died or live with permanent disabilities as a result of meningococcal disease. NMA’s mission is to increase awareness and educate parents, students, educators, medical professionals and others about the dangers of the disease and the vaccines available to prevent it.

About Meningococcal Disease

Meningococcal disease is a rare, potentially deadly, bacterial infection. It is, however, a vaccine-preventable disease. It can strike quickly and can lead to devastating complications such as hearing loss, brain or kidney damage or limb amputations.

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NMA offers a range of educational materials. Browse disease information handouts, FAQs, stories and more. Take a look and learn how to share this information with others.

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NMA Advocates

Learn more about our stories and experiences with meningococcal disease Click here


T.E.A.M. member

“As a high school educator, I feel it’s important that I share my experience with meningitis so my students don’t have to go through the same ordeals I did.”

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M.O.M. of Cherice

“Cherice left behind a legacy of leadership and volunteerism,” said Claudette. “With that in mind I am working to help educate parents about the dangers …”

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Greg & Laurie

T.E.A.M. member

“ Laurie and Greg’s daughter Sara was a freshman at San Diego State University when she called home one evening to say she didn’t feel well. Despite feeling sick…”

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T.E.A.M. member

“ Carl was a freshman in high school when he came home from playing football complaining that he didn’t feel well. The next day, he had flu-like symptoms… ”

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Meningitis on Campus

Teens and young adults are at increased risk of getting meningococcal disease. Those who attend college and live on campus are at slightly higher risk compared to those who do not. Infectious diseases tend to spread wherever large groups of people gather—such as dormitories and classrooms. CDC has reported on 10 college outbreaks between 2013 and 2018. NMA has tracked those outbreaks plus many more individual cases on college campuses. Meningococcal serogroup B has caused every U.S. college outbreak since 2011. While there is no definitive reason for this, a potential explanation is that adolescents are more likely to have received the second dose of the MenACWY vaccine than the MenB vaccine.

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NMA Programs and Collaborations

NMA’s programs and collaborations empower meningococcal disease survivors and families of those affected by the disease to tell their stories to increase awareness of this rare but potentially deadly bacterial infection. Our work also empowers others to advocate for vaccine policies that pave the way for adolescents to get meningococcal vaccines as recommended at ages 11-12 and 16.