Meningococcal B Vaccine


BEXSERO is a vaccine to help protect against meningococcal B.1 BEXSERO is funded on the National Immunisation Schedule for children up to 12 months of age (inclusive), with a funded catch-up programme for all children under 5, from 1 March 2023 to 31 August 2025.2

BEXSERO is also funded for people aged 13 to 25 years (inclusive) who are in their first year of specified close-living situations, including boarding school hostels and tertiary education halls of residence.2

Other vaccines are available to help protect against meningococcal groups A,C,W and Y. There is no single vaccine which covers all the different groups.3

Meningococcal disease can take a life in 24 hours
Meningococcal disease, often referred to as meningitis, is an uncommon but serious infection caused by the bacteria Neisseria meningitidis. A person with meningococcal disease can develop meningitis (inflammation of the membrane surrounding the brain), septicaemia (blood infection) or pneumonia. It strikes without warning, and progresses quickly.3

There are different groups of meningococcal bacteria and groups A, B, C, W and Y most commonly cause disease. Group B is the most common cause of meningococcal disease in NZ, responsible for 72% of cases in 2023.*4,5



Who’s Most at Risk?
Babies in the first year of life and children under 5 years of age are at most risk.3 Therefore, it is important to start vaccination as early as possible (according to official recommendations).
Adolescents and young adults are also at increased risk.3 Sharing and group activities leave teens vulnerable to meningococcal disease.3,8-10

How is it Spread?

The bacteria that causes meningococcal B live within the nose and throat and can be spread through everyday behaviours, including:5

  • coughing and sneezing
  • sharing drinks and eating utensils
  • kissing
  • living in close quarters

What are the symptoms?
Early symptoms of meningococcal disease may appear mild – similar to those of a cold or the flu. However, they usually progress quickly and may include the following:11

Additional symptoms in babies may include: Cold hands and feet or shivering, being floppy or harder to wake, unusual crying, refusal to eat. Additional symptoms in older children and adults may include: Headache, confusion, joint pain and aching muscles.

Don’t wait for a rash to appear before getting medical help. Seek medical attention immediately if you see one or more of the symptoms above.11



Help Protect Your Child or Teen with BEXSERO
Remember vaccination is the most effective way to help prevent meningococcal B and BEXSERO is funded on the National Immunisation Schedule.2,12

It is important to know that more than one dose is required to be fully vaccinated against meningococcal B.1


For more information about BEXSERO ask your doctor, nurse or pharmacist today. You can also visit where you’ll find all the information you need.


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Consumer Infomation


*Of those cases that could be typed (43/59), December 2023 ESR data
1. GlaxoSmithKline NZ, BEXSERO Data Sheet 2023. Available at: Accessed: February 2024. 2. PHARMAC. Decision to widen access to the meningococcal B vaccine and secure supply of the shingles vaccine. 2023. Available at: Accessed: February 2024. 3. Immunisation Advisory Centre (IMAC). Bexsero: A vaccine to protect against Meningococcal group B disease Fact Sheet. Available at: Accessed: February 2024. 4. The Institute of Environmental Science and Research. Invasive Meningococcal Disease Monthly Report. January-December 2023. Available at: 5. Ministry of Health website. Meningococcal disease (including meningitis). Summary tab. Available at: Accessed February 2024. 6. Thompson MJ, Ninis N, Perera R, et al. Clinical recognition of meningococcal disease in children and adolescents. Lancet. 2006;367:397–403. 7. Rosenstein NE, et al. Meningococcal disease. N Engl J Med 2001; 344(18):1378-88. 8. Vetter V, Baxter R, Denizer G, et al. Routinely vaccinating adolescents against meningococcus: targeting transmission and disease. Expert Rev Vaccines. 15;5:641-658. doi:10.1586/14760584.2016.1130628. 9. Mayo Clinic. Symptoms and causes: meningitis. Available at: Accessed: February 2024. 10. Pelton SI. Meningococcal disease awareness: clinical and epidemiological factors affecting prevention and management in adolescents. J Adol Health. 2010;46:S9-S15. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2009.11.220. 11. Ministry of Health. Meningococcal Disease – Don’t Wait, Take Action. Available at: Accessed: February 2024. 12. World Health Organization. Meningococcal Meningitis. September 29, 2021. Available at: Accessed February 2024.

BEXSERO (Multicomponent meningococcal group B vaccine) is for immunisation against invasive disease caused by N. meningitidis group B from 2 months of age or as per official recommendations. BEXSERO is a prescription medicine. It is funded as part of the National Immunisation Schedule for infants and children under 5, people aged 13-25 years in close-living situations, and for people who are close contacts of a meningococcal case, or who are at high risk due to reduced immune function. See Pharmaceutical Schedule for full funding criteria. BEXSERO is also available for private purchase – you will need to pay the full cost of this medicine. Normal doctor’s charges apply. A 0.5 mL dose contains 50 mcg of Neisseria meningitidis Group B Neisseria Heparin Binding Antigen fusion protein, 50 mcg of Neisseria meningitidis Group B Neisseria Adhesin A protein, 50 mcg of Neisseria meningitidis Group B Factor H Binding Protein fusion protein, 25 mcg of Outer membrane vesicles (OMV) from Neisseria meningitidis group B strain NZ98/254 measured as amount of total protein containing the PorA P1.4. BEXSERO has risks and benefits. Ask your doctor if BEXSERO is right for you. Use strictly as directed. BEXSERO should not be administered if you or your child are hypersensitive to any component of this vaccine. Very common side effects: Infants, toddlers & children: eating disorders, sleepiness, unusual crying, headache, diarrhoea, vomiting, rash, fever (≥38°C), injection site reactions, irritability, arthralgia. Use paracetamol to prevent and reduce the risk of fever in children under the age of 2. Adolescents & Adults: headache, nausea, injection site reactions, malaise, myalgia, arthralgia. If you or your child have side effects, see your doctor. Additional product information and Consumer Medicine Information (CMI) is available at Trademarks are owned by or licensed to the GSK group of companies. ©2024 GSK group of companies or its licensor. Marketed by GlaxoSmithKline NZ Ltd, Auckland. Adverse events involving GlaxoSmithKline products should be reported to GSK Medical Information on 0800 808 500. Date of Approval: 03 2024 Date of Expiry: 03 2026. TAPS NP19263-PM-NZ-BEX-WCNT-230008

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