Vig­i­lance over menin­gi­tis

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - OPINION -

MANY of your read­ers will have seen the re­cent good news about new vac­cines for menin­gi­tis for ba­bies and stu­dents.

At char­ity Menin­gi­tis Now we welcome this news but we also want to is­sue a warn­ing as the new school year starts against com­pla­cency to­wards the dis­ease.

These new vac­cines do not mean menin­gi­tis is beaten and we would urge par­ents, stu­dents and teach­ers to be vig­i­lant to the signs and symp­toms and down­load our free mo­bile app or re­quest a symp­toms card.

Menin­gi­tis is a dis­ease that can kill within hours, so knowl­edge of the symp­toms, vig­i­lance and quick ac­tion are vi­tal.

The menin­gi­tis risk in­creases dur­ing the colder months as peo­ple spend more time in­doors, closer to oth­ers; mean­ing germs are spread more easily.

Fight­ing com­mon in­fec­tions like colds and flu weak­ens im­mune sys­tems, leav­ing them more vul­ner­a­ble to the dis­ease.

It can be a dif­fi­cult dis­ease to spot as many of its early symp­toms can be sim­i­lar to those of flu.

Symp­toms can in­clude fever with cold hands and feet, vom­it­ing, headache, stiff neck, dis­like of bright light, joint or mus­cle pain, pale blotchy skin, drowsi­ness and con­fu­sion, and in ba­bies, a dis­like of be­ing han­dled, an un­usual cry, rapid breath­ing and bulging fontanelle.

Adults and chil­dren may also have a rash that does not fade un­der pres­sure. Symp­toms can ap­pear in any or­der and some may not ap­pear at all. Our ad­vice is not to wait for a rash, the symp­tom most com­monly as­so­ci­ated with menin­gi­tis. This doesn’t al­ways ap­pear and can ap­pear late. If con­cerned, seek ur­gent med­i­cal at­ten­tion.

Menin­gi­tis Now’s free signs and symp­toms phone app and credit card-sized signs and symp­toms cards for peo­ple to keep in a wal­let or purse are avail­able by call­ing its freep­hone helpline on 0808 80 10 388, or vis­it­ing the web­site at www. menin­gi­

The char­ity will sup­port any­one who has ex­pe­ri­ence of menin­gi­tis. For fur­ther in­for­ma­tion on how to ac­cess these ser­vices call the helpline on the above num­ber.

SUE DAVIE Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Menin­gi­tis Now Fern House Bath Road


ev­ery­one in Che­sham will have had sim­i­lar emo­tional ex­pe­ri­ences and if you’re won­der­ing if I’m re­fer­ring, of course, to the not so grace­ful ‘ma­tur­ing’ of our roads.

When we ar­rived in Nalders Road more than 30 years ago it needed resur­fac­ing then and so the de­te­ri­o­ra­tion of the route I use sev­eral times ev­ery day has be­come close to my heart.

In a slightly per­verse way I have be­come strangely at­tached to Cameron Road and Nalders Road as the rav­ages of time be­come more pro­nounced.

I wince as I drive over a pot­hole or a mini crevasse be­cause not only do my tyres suf­fer the road does too and the ‘wound’ slowly wors­ens – I feel its pain.

There has been a plethora of stop-gap ‘surgery’ to de­lay the rad­i­cal surgery, and for years I, along with ex­ist­ing and for­mer Lib Dem coun­cil­lors, have been press­ing for the work to start and now the day has ar­rived for the re­me­dial op­er­a­tion.

The ‘sur­geons’ in their uni­forms have scraped off the ‘ul­cer­ated’ sur­face and will re­place it with a silky new skin.

This is a day we never thought would ar­rive so well done to Trans­port for Bucks for even­tu­ally al­lo­cat­ing re­sources for the work but what about Eskdale Av­enue and all the other roads like Lown­des Av­enue that also need at­ten­tion?

The work to­day is but a drop in the ocean which could have been avoided if Bucks County Coun­cil had not de­layed the work to shore up other bud­gets.

We ap­plaud that a short stretch of road has been re­stored to what should be its nor­mal con­di­tion and hope work con­tin­ues to re­duce what is lit­tle short of a county-wide dis­grace.



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