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Possibility Of A Meningococcal Outbreak In NSW

A baby and man in central-western NSW, both suspected to have contacted meningococcal disease are being treated at the Dubbo Base Hospital //. The man and the baby, who hail from Cobar and Mudgee respectively, are showing signs of improvement following treatment.

It has not been possible to relate both the cases, based on the evidence obtained, said Dr.Tony Brown of the Greater Western Area Health Service. In addition, family members and friends have been instructed accordingly and advised to follow certain precautionary measures.

Meningococcal disease is a potentially dangerous infection characterized by symptoms of high fever, nausea or vomiting, headache and rashes that are either pinpointed or blotchy and purple in color.

It more commonly occurs during the colder months. However, some cases may occur sporadically, during any time of the year. Although the disease can affect individuals of all ages, young adults and children are particularly at a high risk for contracting the infection.

The infection does not spread easily and is transmitted through nose and throat secretions of an infected person. Prolonged contact with the infected individual is necessary before meningococcal infection can be passed on from one person to the other.

The only effective way to manage meningococcal infection is to seek immediate medical treatment. Appropriate medical care instituted at an early stage can prevent the development of serious complications. In view of a potential meningococcal infection outbreak, the residents have been urged to report any suspected case to the health officials, at the earliest.


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