WHO releases new roadmap to defeat meningitis

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WHO releases new roadmap to defeat meningitis

  • World Health Organization (WHO) launched the first ever global strategy to battle meningitis,
  • The strategy ‘Global Roadmap to Defeat Meningitis by 2030’, aims to prevent infections and improve care and diagnosis for those affected.
  • According to the WHO, 250,000 people die annually from bacterial meningitis.


  • Meningitis is an inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord.
  • It is predominantly caused by bacterial and viral infection.
  • Meningitis caused by bacterial infection causes around 250,000 deaths a year and can lead to fast-spreading epidemics.
  • It kills a tenth of those infected mostly children and young people and leaves a fifth with long-lasting disability, such as seizures, hearing and vision loss, neurological damage, and cognitive impairment.
  • Meningitis is most common in the ‘Meningitis Belt,’ which spans 26 countries across sub-Saharan Africa.

Aim of New roadmap

  • Achievement of high immunisation coverage, development of new affordable vaccines and improved prevention strategies and outbreak response
  • Speedy diagnosis and optimal treatment for patients
  • Good data to guide prevention and control efforts
  • Care and support for those affected, focusing on early recognition and improved access to care and support for after-effects
  • Advocacy and engagement, to ensure high awareness of meningitis, accountability for national plans, and affirmation of the right to prevention, care and after-care services

Goal of Roadmap

  • By 2030, the goals are:
  1. To eliminate epidemics of bacterial meningitis—the deadliest form of the disease.
  2. To reduce deaths by 70% and halve the number of cases.