What is Meningococcal Disease? According to Australian GP and HIF blogger, Dr. Sam, ‘Meningococcal Disease’ is more of a generic term, describing infection with the bacteria ‘Nisseria meningitidis’, commonly called ‘meningococcus’. There are 13 different strains, with the most common being A, B, C, W135, and Y (and the most frequent affected ages being the under fives, and teenagers aged 15-19 year old). In terms of transmission, it occurs when people cough and sneeze; however meningococcus is in saliva too – which means sharing drinks and kissing is a big risk for teenagers too." Given this information we asked Dr. Sam for his advice on what we need to know about the recent outbreaks, the various strains, and the vaccines available to families.