The single MenC vaccine was in the routine UK immunisation schedule from 1999 until July 2016. This vaccine gives protection against meningococcal disease (a major cause of meningitis) caused by group C Neisseria meningitidis bacteria. Babies and children are still protected against MenC disease through the Hib/MenC vaccine and the MenACWY vaccine, but the single MenC vaccine is no longer routinely used in the UK.
The MenC vaccination programme was introduced in the UK in 1999 and quickly led to a dramatic fall in the numbers of cases of MenC disease. Meningococcal bacteria are commonly carried in the back of the throat and passed around from person to person, but the vaccine prevents carriage of MenC bacteria. This means that even people who are not vaccinated are protected by herd immunity. Currently there are almost no cases of MenC disease in infants or young children in the UK. Before vaccination, there were nearly 1000 cases a year and 70-80 deaths a year.
The schedule for MenC vaccination in the UK changed several times between 1999 and 2017, owing to changing patterns of disease:
For more information on these changes, see our blog pieces:
MenC vaccines licensed in the UK included NeisVac-C and Menjugate.
There are other types of meningococcal disease which can also be vaccinated against. See information on the MenB vaccine and the MenACWY vaccine.