Meningitis ACWY


Meningitis is passed from person to person who are in close contact via nasal or throat droplets, for example by coughing, sneezing or kissing. The meningitis ACWY vaccination protects you against infection from the A, C, W and Y types of bacteria.

Vaccination for Travel

If you are planning to travel abroad, you need to check whether you will be entering a meningococcal meningitis risk area. Meningitis is particularly prominent in parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, an area sometimes referred to as the “meningitis belt”, where meningitis A is the most frequent cause of the illness, but there have been recent outbreaks of W, X and C.

Vaccination for College/University

It is recommended that students attending university for the first time, receive a single dose of Meningitis ACWY.

What is meningitis?

There are several types of meningitis which can affect travellers, including meningitis A, C, W, and Y. They are all types of meningococcal meningitis and are caused by bacteria. As opposed to viral meningitis, bacterial meningitis is very dangerous. Causing an inflammation of the meningeal tissue surrounding the brain and spinal cord, Neisseria meningitidis bacteria can cause severe brain damage.

Around 10% of meningitis patients can die of the infection, even with treatment. The symptoms of meningitis vary from person to person but usually, the infection involves a severe headache, a high temperature and vomiting. Some patients also suffer from a stiff neck, are unusually sensitive to light and feel exhausted.

The most typical symptom of meningitis is a skin rash, which occurs in many but not all cases. In addition to the traditional meningitis C vaccine, there is a meningitis ACWY vaccine, which provides protection against all four meningitis types included in its name. It is particularly suitable for travellers who may be at risk of contracting any one of the four types.

Meningitis certificate

Some countries, for example Saudi Arabia, demand that you provide a meningitis ACWY certificate prior to entering the country. The vaccine is compulsory for the Hajj pilgrimage. Our pharmacies are an approved provider for The Muslim Council for Britain.

The certificate becomes valid 10 days after vaccination.

Meningitis certificate for students

It is especially recommended that students attending university for the first time receive a single dose of Meningitis ACWY.

Side effects

You may experience some side effects after having received the meningitis ACWY jab. These may include fever, nausea, headache and feeling tired. You may also experience some skin irritation at the injection site. Some patients develop a small lump where the injection was given. This lump will resolve by itself within a few weeks.

If you experience any other side effects or if the symptoms do not resolve, see a doctor. If a you have a high fever over 38.5 that lasts more than 24 hours you would also need to see a doctor and ask them to report this.

When to get vaccinated

If you are getting vaccinated prior to going to a risk area you should aim to get the jab at least two weeks before you travel.


The course consists of one dose


The vaccine can be given from birth

Additional precautions

Early treatment is vital – if you or a fellow traveller show symptom of meningitis, seek medical attention immediately. The ACWY vaccine does not protect against meningitis B.

Risk if you contract the disease

Meningitis can cause an inflammation of the tissue around the spinal cord and brain. This can result in brain damage and death.


Our vaccination costs £50 and is available with no appointment necessary. We also offer the Meningitis B Vaccination at £105 per vaccination.

Service details

Price: Small charge

Frequency: When required…


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