When you become a parent, almost immediately you have this overwhelming sense that you would do anything – absolutely anything – to keep your baby safe and healthy. Sometimes, there are things that are out of our control and we may not always be aware of ways to prevent dangerous health issues.
Please note that we are very aware that over the past few years, the question of vaccinating our kids has become a very important topic. Within all of our communities, there are parents who don’t give a second thought to having their kids get scheduled vaccinations, parents who choose to delay certain vaccines and parents who do not vaccinate their kids at all. I personally know parents in all of these camps and respect whatever decision each has made for your family. All parents have the same goal in mind – keeping our kids safe and healthy – and everyone reaches that goal by their own path. The purpose of this post is to relay factual information and is in no way speaking against any choice that any parent has made with regards to their feelings about vaccines.
Meningitis, also known as meningococcal disease, is a sudden and very aggressive illness that can be deadly within 24 – 48 hours of the first symptoms. Because babies younger than one year old have less sophisticated immune systems, they are at a higher risk of contracting meningitis. Vaccines do exist to protect babies, but they are not currently universally recommended for infants.
Who are the Meningitis Angels?
The Meningitis Angels is a national non-profit organization founded in memory of Ryan Wayne Milley, who passed away at age age 18 from meningococcal meningitis. It is now one of the largest global meningitis organizations dedicated to raising awareness about meningitis and other vaccine-preventable diseases. One step in their fight is PIN, the “Protect Infants Now” campaign and they have organized an online petition to encourage the CDC to include the meningitis vaccine in the recommended infant vaccination schedule.
The thought of your child contracting meningitis is scary – there’s no arguing about that. There are more deaths from meningococcal disease than from pertussis, measles, mumps, rubella and rotovirus disease – all infections which infants currently receive vaccinations for.
Again, families need to make their own decisions when it comes to the vaccination of their children. But if you are a parent who would support the vaccination for meningitis being recommended by the CDC, feel free to sign their petition here.
We participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central and Meningitis Angels. This campaign was made possible in part through support provided by Novartis Vaccines. A small donation to a charity of our choice was made in our name from Mom Central as a thank-you for participating. All opinions in this posting are 100% our own.