Eighth case of meningococcal disease confirmed in Tasmania

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Infants and late teenagers were "at usually higher risk of meningococcal disease..."

An eighth case of meningococcal disease has been confirmed in Tasmania.

ABC reports a four-year-old girl from East Devonport is in a stable condition at the Royal Hobart Hospital after being diagnosed with the disease.

This will be the eighth case in the state in the past two months.

In a statement from the acting director of public health Scott McKeown, he said health services were working with the four-year-old's family to "ensure they and other close contacts are properly managed to minimise the risk of further infection".

"The strain of meningococcal disease contracted by the girl is not yet known."

There s currently a statewide vaccination program for meningococcal ACWY strains underway

"Under that program, all Tasmanians born after August 1, 1997 and at least six weeks old are eligible for a free meningococcal vaccination covering the strains A, C, W and Y. All Tasmanians within this age bracket are strongly advised to get the free vaccine."

McKeown says infants and late teenagers were "at usually higher risk of meningococcal disease, and can also contribute to spread of meningococcal bacteria in the community".

A 16-year-old girl, Sara Beltz died from the disease in July.

Image credit: Getty Images

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