Meningitis - How is it spread?

Meningococcal bacteria pass from one person to another through secretions from the nose or throat, for example by coughing or sneezing on someone, but it usually needs to be quite close or prolonged contact. It is more likely to spread among people living in the same house or who are in very close contact with each other (including intimate kissing).3  Localised outbreaks can occur in closed-in spaces where crowds gather, such as in sport stadiums, schools and universities.4

On average about 15% of people carry the meningococcal bacteria in their throat and nose, without being unwell — they are known as carriers and they can spread the disease.1

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