London, April 21 : An official health report has revealed that deaths of children and teens due to a killer strain of meningitis have been eradicated for the first time in the UK.
The eradication of deaths caused by the disease will be seen as a breakthrough in the battle to fight meningitis, say experts.
However, campaigners have cautioned that further work is required to combat meningitis - as a vaccine to eliminate its deadliest and most common strain is still not available to the public.
The report has revealed that no deaths occurred from meningitis C among under-19s in the past 12 months, the first time zero mortality rates have been recorded. Since the introduction of a vaccine, administered via a national programme, in 1999, there has been a sharp decline in cases of meningitis C.
Before the introduction of the programme, around 30 under-19s were dying from meningitis C every 12 months, while just under 300 a year were being diagnosed with the disease.
"The NHS of the future is about preventing illness and disease, not just treating them when they occur," The Telegraph quoted a senior Government source, as saying.