Meningococcal claims young child

A CHILD believed to be suffering from meningococcal disease has died at the Hervey Bay Hospital, prompting a warning from health officials to be on the lookout for symptoms.

On Saturday, the four-year-old girl was taken to the hospital with flu-like symptoms and died a short time later.

Yesterday, regional physician Margaret Young said tests had been done to determine the cause of death but from the time the child presented at the hospital, meningococcal was considered the probable cause of her illness.

She said due to privacy laws she could not release further details.

“This is a tragic death and I offer my sincere condolences to the child's family,” Dr Young said.

“Queensland Health has provided information and clearance antibiotics to close contacts of the child and advice to other concerned people in accordance with national public health guidelines.”

Dr Young urged the community not to be alarmed. She said the case was a reminder to be alert of the symptoms, particularly a fast-spreading, bruise-like rash.

There were 46 Queensland cases of meningococcal this year with two deaths. The last Fraser Coast case was in June, 2009, and was not fatal.


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