Bacterial Meningitis is a disease refers to any illness that is caused by the type of bacteria called Neisseria meningitidis, also known as meningococcus. These illnesses are often severe and include infections of the lining of the brain and spinal cord (meningitis) and bloodstream infections (bacteremia or
Bacterial Meningitis are spread through the exchange of respiratory and throat secretions like spit (e.g., by living in close quarters, kissing). Bacterial Meningitis can be treated with antibiotics, but quick medical attention is extremely important. Keeping up to date with recommended vaccines is the best defense against meningococcal disease.
The annual incidence of bacterial meningitis in Australia is approximately 3 cases per 100,000 population. Incidence is affected by such factors as geography, ethnicity, socio-economic status and availability of immunisation against the various infective organisms. Individuals of any age may be affected, but the very young and elderly (> 60 years) are more susceptible.