The script and cue for the final cut of the radio documentary: Meningitis: The Killer in Disguise

CUE

[PRES]
Meningitis is a disease which can kill in hours and yet a lot of people don’t seem to know much about it. Students and young people are one of the most vulnerable groups, but why is this?

Our reporter Abi Simpson investigates this killer in disguise, and looks at the damage it can do.

SCRIPT

Melanie clip

Danny clip

Melanie clip

[PRES]
Cases of meningitis in young adults have been increasing year on year, and yet a majority of students and teenagers wouldn’t be able to identify the symptoms.
Over the next 7 minutes I will be exploring what meningitis actually is, what it’s like to have the disease and take a look at the devastation it can cause.

Jingle

[PRES]
1 in 10 people that contract meningitis die within 24 hours of the first symptom. I spoke to Claire Donovan who is a registered nurse and now manages the helpline at leading UK charity, Meningitis Now. She explained to me what meningitis is and how it causes so much damage.

Claire clip

[PRES]
Melanie Corney contracted meningitis when she was 26 years old and was lucky to survive. She like many young adults today didn’t know what meningitis was or the danger it could pose. She spoke to me about the disease which changed her life forever.

Melanie clip

[PRES]
Melanie was diagnosed with meningococcal septicaemia, she was told that it was likely that she had the B strain of the disease, which wasn’t protected against by vaccination at the time.

Melanie clip

[PRES]
The only way to protect yourself against meningitis is through vaccination. Last year the ACWY vaccine was made free for all students starting university to try and combat the rise in cases. Claire told me why it’s so important that students take advantage of the vaccination.

Claire clip

[PRES]
The vaccination does not protect you against all strains of meningitis, so knowing the signs and symptoms could still save your life. One of the reasons experts think more students carry the bacteria is down to lifestyle choices.

Claire clip

[PRES]
One of the reasons meningitis poses such a threat to students is that the symptoms are very similar to flu or sometimes even a hangover. This can result in signs not being spotted early enough or simply being ignored.

Claire clip

Danny clip

[PRES]
 Danny Sweatman knows all too well the difference a vaccine can make. He lost not one, but two brothers to meningitis, due to vaccinations not being available at the time of their deaths. Joe died at just 7 weeks old in 1991, and Ryan died during his first year at university just 5 years ago. Danny told me about the moment he found out Ryan had died.

Danny clip

[PRES]
Ryan knew the symptoms of meningitis and was up to date on all of his vaccinations but unfortunately the strain he contracted was not something covered at the time, and still isn’t freely available to students today.

Danny clip

[PRES]
For those lucky enough to survive, overcoming the meningitis is often just the first hurdle. It’s a disease which leaves many people with life changing side effects.

Melanie clip

[PRES]
Loss of limbs, hearing and eyesight are other examples of side effects of meningitis. For a student, being able to remember things is vital, but what if suddenly you found you could no longer learn quickly or spell correctly?

Melanie clip

[PRES]
Meningitis appears to be something that a lot of young people don’t take very seriously. Getting vaccinated against a disease which could potentially kill you, or change your life forever shouldn’t be a chore. Only 29% of eligible young adults took advantage of the free vaccination last year. What’s your excuse for not getting vaccinated against this killer in disguise?

BACK ANNO

If you want to find out more about what you’ve heard in this documentary, visit: meningitismmp.wordpress.com

 

Feature image credit: Joe Flood

Advertisements