Health warning on meningococcal disease

HEALTH authorities are advising family and friends of preventative measures after a 21 year old man from the upper Derwent Valley died from meningococcal disease overnight at the Royal Hobart Hospital. The Director of Public Health, Dr Roscoe Taylor said tests had confirmed that a man admitted to hospital overnight had died from meningococcal infection invading his bloodstream..

“My sympathies, and those of the staff at the Royal Hobart Hospital, go out to the family and friends of this young man,” Dr Taylor said. The case appeared to be an isolated occurrence and close contacts of the man were being followed up and where appropriate would be offered information and preventative antibiotics.

Dr Taylor said the particular type of meningococcal infection had not as yet been established, and further tests were under way. “I advise all Tasmanians to remain vigilant for signs of the infection. Early symptoms can include headaches, neck stiffness, fever, drowsiness, nausea and skin rash. If anyone is concerned, they should see their doctor,” Dr Taylor said.

Further information on the infection is available here.

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