MENINGITIS is every parent’s nightmare. Due to the speed at which it strikes the early symptoms are easily confused with other illnesses and children are often desperately ill by the time they are admitted to hospital.

Kia Gott was still a baby when she contracted meningitis C septicaemia last September. As she lay in intensive care, medics at the Bradford Royal Infirmary (BRI) warned her parents to prepare themselves for the worst.

Kia’s was one of the worst cases they had ever seen.

But the doctors had reckoned without Kia’s incredible spirit. Despite losing all four of her limbs, the youngster has defied expectations and, as we report today, has been allowed home on day-release for the first time.

That’s a truly remarkable recovery - and one that we hope will continue until Kia is able to come home permanently. It’s also testimony to the quality of care she received as a patient at the BRI.

Kia contracted meningitis before she was old enough to be vaccinated after the Government raised the vaccination age from three months to one year.

Since then the number of cases in very young children has risen, although the overall incidence of meningitis C is still mercifully low. But one case is still one case too many if a family has to suffer the horrors that Kia Gott’s family must have gone through since September.

Kia’s parents have started a petition calling on the Government to reconsider its decision. We wholeheartedly endorse their call for action.