Teens to line Up for Vaccine

Free-of-Charge Vaccinations will be made available to teenagers aged between 14 to 19 for four strains of the deadly meningococcal disease under a new Federal Government program.

The State Government has had a program in place since February 2017 for free vaccinations against the meningococcal A, C, W and Y strains for 15-19-yearolds with the state-based program due to end in December.

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Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt says the $52 million national program will now become available from next year.

More than one million teenagers will be eligible for the vaccinations against the A, C, W and Y meningococcal strains over the next four years.

Mr Hunt says that the meningococcal A, C, W and Y meningococcal vaccine would be added to the National Immunisation Program from April next year and given to students aged 14-16 under a school-based program.

Adolescents aged 15-19, who have not received the vaccine at school, will be immunised through a catch-up program with their local GP.

40 Queenslanders have so far this year been diagnosed with a meningococcal infection, compared with 69 cases for the whole of 2017.

The vaccine has been available for 12-month-olds since July.