Meningococcal disease is a serious bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Neisseria meningitidis, known as a meningococcus.

It causes severe illnesses including:

  • meningitis (an infection of membranes that cover the brain)
  • septicaemia (blood poisoning).

View Meningococcal disease for more information, including symptoms, illness and immunisation.

More detailed information can be found in the: 

Also see the Centers for Disease Control (US) and the Health Protection Agency (UK) websites.

Parenteral antibiotics should be administered to all cases as soon as meningococcal disease is suspected.

Attending medical practitioners and laboratories must immediately notify a medical officer of health of any suspected cases of meningococcal disease.

Notification should not await confirmation. Public health services will follow-up cases and people who have been in close contact with the case.