For the last two years, members of the Sutton Valence Sixth Form have taken part in the ‘Be on the TEAM: Teenagers Against Meningitis’ research study. The School has been informed that the study is stopping early in light of the ongoing challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Visits were temporarily suspended when schools closed in March, however, no further visits will be possible. This decision has been taken in consultation with the study funder, the study sponsor (University of Oxford) and the study scientific advisory board, and reflects concerns about the feasibility and safety to staff and students of undertaking study visits in the coming months.
The good news is that at the time of school closures back in March 2020, over 24,000 students in the UK had enrolled in the meningitis study and over 11,000 had completed their participation. Importantly, the team anticipate that with the data collected so far they will still be able to determine whether immunising with group B meningococcal vaccines reduces the carriage of this bacteria in the throat of teenagers.
It is important to make clear that this vaccine is not part of the national vaccine schedule for this age group, so students have not missed out on any routine care.
Once again thank you to all of our Sixth Form students who supported this important research study. Participation and engagement from the 120 schools/colleges across the country have been a tremendous success. The team are sorry that they weren’t able to continue the visits at Sutton Valence but look forward to communicating the study results when they are published.
For more information about meningitis, please do look at the following websites, recommended by the research team for those who wish to know more: