Predicted Probability of Meningitis Epidemic Experience

This map shows meningitis risk in Africa derived from probabilistic model based on environmental factors.

Although there are many factors (environmental and otherwise) that contribute to a meningitis outbreak, this product is the first attempt to map correlations between historical outbreaks of meningitis with both absolute humidity and land-cover type.

The World Health Organization proposes the use of environmental thresholds for enhanced early detection of epidemics and improved control responses. This map is a useful tool in defining 'at-risk' areas in critical need of increased monitoring activities and epidemic preparedness.

More information about the model and its limitations may be found in the reference below.

Low risk (p<0.4)
Moderate risk (p<0.6)
High risk (p<0.8)
Very High risk (p>0.8)

Dataset Documentation

Molesworth, A. M., L. E. Cuevas, S. J. Connor, A. P. Morse and M. C. Thomson, 2003: Environmental Risk and Meningitis Epidemics in Africa. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 9(10): 1287-1293.

Data Source
Environmental Risk and Meningitis Epidemics in Africa.


Access the dataset used to create this map.


Contact with any technical questions or problems with this Map Room, for example, the forecasts not displaying or updating properly.


This product shows the predicted probability for epidemic experience due to the environmental factors of absolute humidity and land-cover type.

This model does not include the impact of nonenvironmental factors likely to be related to meningitis epidemics, such as population movement, vaccination coverage and recent epidemics in the area.

Users should note that these data are based on a statistical model that exhibited a sensitivity and specificity of 83% and 67%, respectively.