THE parents of a little who boy lost his life through meningitis are launching an emotional campaign to make a life-saving vaccine available on the NHS.
Danielle and Steve Ashurst, from Tyldesley, are desperate to make Bexsero, a vaccine against meningitis B, available to sufferers of the deadly disease after it claimed the life of their precious six-year-old son Corby last year.
Their quest to prevent other families going through a similar nightmare experience has also won the backing of Leigh MP and shadow secretary of state for health Andy Burnham.
Meningitis B is the most common form of the disease in the UK, with around 10 per cent of the 1,870 people affected on average every year losing their life to the condition.
Danielle and Steve are supporting the Beat It Now campaign, which is being organised by Meningitis UK and the Meningitis Trust, to ensure Bexsero is placed on the childhood immunisation schedule for British youngsters.
Danielle, of Heathfield Drive, said: “We never imagined that meningitis would affect our family and take away our gorgeous son, who died just three days before his seventh birthday.
“Meningitis is a terrifying disease that can strike so quickly and anything we can do to stop others going through a similar ordeal is our goal.
“We want to keep Corby’s memory alive and save the lives of others.
“Vaccines are the only way to protect families like ours against the trauma of meningitis. We cannot let the Government delay bringing in the vaccine.
“The last major meningitis vaccine took five years to be introduced; there’s no way we can wait that long this time. And if cost is a factor, we cannot let that get in the way.
“You cannot put a price on someone like our son’s life.”
Backing the Ashursts’ campaign, Mr Burnham said: “After hearing from Corby’s parents about the devastation that meningitis has caused to their family, I had to do something.