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Published On: Fri, Jul 19th, 2013

Chile: New case of meningococcal meningitis brings outbreak total to 39

The Chilean Public Health Institute (ISP) confirmed earlier this week an additional case of meningococcal meningitis in the capital city of Santiago, bringing the total case count since the beginning of the year to 39.

 

Image/CIA

Image/CIA

The strain implicated in this outbreak is Neisseria meningitidis W-135, the same strain reported in last years outbreak of the deadly bacterial infection.

According to the ISP, the number of fatalities reported to date is 11.

This years outbreak has prompted health officials to roll out a national vaccination program for infants, according to a Santiago Times report.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says meningococcal meningitis is a bacterial form of meningitis, a serious infection of the meninges that affects the brain membrane. It can cause severe brain damage and is fatal in 50% of cases if untreated.

Several different bacteria can cause meningitis. Neisseria meningitidis is the one with the potential to cause large epidemics. Twelve serogroups of N. meningitidis have been identified, six of which (A, B, C, W135, X and Y) can cause epidemics. Geographic distribution and epidemic potential differ according to serogroup.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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  1. Chile: New case of meningococcal meningitis brings outbreak total to 39 | biblebabe778's Blog says:

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