Meningo­coc­cal woman on mend

The Advertiser - - NEWS - KA­T­RINA STOKES HEALTH RE­PORTER SATUR­DAY SEPTEM­BER 30 2017

A WOMAN who has been fight­ing for her life after be­ing di­ag­nosed with the deadly meningo­coc­cal B-strain is “do­ing well”, weeks after her hus­band died of the dis­ease.

It comes as a 7-year-old boy from re­gional SA was ad­mit­ted to hos­pi­tal with the W-strain. He is in a sta­ble con­di­tion.

Green­with woman Gil­lian Tay­lor, 52, right, has been in a crit­i­cal con­di­tion at the Lyell McEwin Hos­pi­tal but her daugh­ter Ni­cole Lums­den, 31, of Munno Para, told The Ad­ver­tiser her mother was fi­nally awake. “They (the doc­tors) took her off se­da­tion this morn­ing (Fri­day) and they let her wake up,” she said.

“The first thing she said was ‘what hap­pened?’.

“It’s look­ing very hope­ful (but) she’s not 100 per cent out of the woods yet.”

The news comes weeks after Ms Lums­den’s step­fa­ther Mark Tay­lor, 53, died of the same strain five hours after he fell ill on July 17.

Ms Lums­den again urged the State and Fed­eral gov­ern­ments to make the meningo­coc­cal B-strain vac­cine free for every­one. “I want the vac­cine to be avail­able for free like a flu shot,” she said. “No­body should have to go through this – it’s dev­as­tat­ing.

“On Mon­day, she (Gil­lian) was com­plain­ing that her neck was re­ally sore and stiff, she had a headache and she was drowsy. She pre­sented with spots (on her body) and had an in­fec­tion on her brain.”

Health au­thor­i­ties are try­ing to de­ter­mine the source of the dis­ease but it ap­pears un­likely Mr Tay­lor in­fected his wife. So far this year, there have been 29 cases in SA, com­pared with 20 at the same time last year.

Eigh­teen cases have been the B-strain, eight have been the W-strain and three cases the Y-strain.

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