Flick backs Meningitis jab for children under 11

Portsmouth South MP Flick Drummond has backed calls by campaigners for children up to 11 to be given the Meningitis B vaccine.

MPs debated the issue last week following a petition signed by more than 800,000 people calling for the jab to be given not just to those under one, but to older children.

The Government said that the present system was the right one that was targeting new-borns who were the most high risk group, and to vaccinate older children would not be cost effective.

‘I very much understand that the Government must ensure that any vaccination programme offers the best outcomes for the cost of what is an expensive vaccine but, in this case, I think that it would be in the best interests of everyone to ensure that all children up to 11 receive it,’ said Flick.

‘This is a terrible disease that causes death and severe disability in children of all ages and it can be prevented by this vaccination, so I urge the government to look again at its decision and to look at finding the money to fund it.

‘The petition asking MPs to debate the issue was the largest ever - very much showing the depth of feeling from parents. We are not talking vast amounts of money, so I will be writing to the minister asking her to look at a suitable funding mechanism.’