The onset of meningitis can occur suddenly and progress rapidly, with the potential to become fatal within a matter of hours. Survivors can be left with debilitating neurological side effects ranging from speech disorders to mental retardation and paralysis.

Since 2011, Sabin has worked to improve meningococcal disease estimates, focusing on Latin America. Through regional symposia, research and advocacy, Sabin provides a broader base of knowledge on which to build future initiatives, while bringing together key stakeholders to better understand and fight meningococcal disease.

In partnership with the International Vaccine Access Center at the Johns Hopkins University (IVAC), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Sabin performed an analytical review of the epidemiological burden and economic impact of N. meningitidis in the Latin America and Caribbean region. The results of the study show N. meningitidis is the leading cause of bacterial meningitis in many Latin American countries, and that the economic impact of meningococcal disease can vary widely across countries in the region.