Pneumococcal disease (PPSV(What is a PDF document?) or PCV(What is a PDF document?)). Getting this shot usually protects people from the type of bacteria that is most likely to cause meningitis death.
Meningococcal disease(What is a PDF document?). This shot is also recommended for people
whose risk is higher than normal, such as travelers to countries known to
have outbreaks of meningitis, people without a spleen, and those who have
For more information about immunizations, see the
Did You Know?
Under the Affordable Care Act, many health insurance plans will provide free preventive care services, including checkups, vaccinations and screening tests, to children and teens. Learn more.
A link has been found
between meningitis and
cochlear implants for severe hearing loss. To help
protect against meningitis, experts recommend that people with cochlear implants get a pneumococcal shot. Also, some people with implants have ear
infections before they get meningitis, so it's important to treat ear infections right away with antibiotics.
Lowering your risk
Take steps to lower your
risk of getting or spreading meningitis:
Stay away from people who have
Keep people with meningitis separate from other people in
Wash your hands often if you have meningitis or are
taking care of someone who does. Wash your hands after using the toilet or
helping a sick child use the toilet, after changing a sick baby's diaper, and
after handling used bedsheets, towels, clothes, or personal items of a sick person.
Avoid contact with wild animals. And take steps to prevent bites from bugs, such as mosquitoes and ticks, that might carry disease-causing bacteria or viruses.
If you come in close contact with someone who has
bacterial meningitis, call your doctor. Taking antibiotics may keep you from getting the illness.
If your contact is only casual—for
example, at school or at work—you don't need to take antibiotics.