A Corvallis, Oregon middle school student is hospitalized and recovering from meningococcal disease, according to to school officials this week. On Sunday, January 14, 2018, a Linus Pauling student was hospitalized with a confirmed case of meningococcal disease.
The Benton County Health Department is investigating this case thoroughly with the support of the Corvallis School District and state health officials. The strain identity has not yet been released to the public.
This case follows six cases of meningitis B during the course of a year at Oregon State University (OSU).
At this time, the investigation has found no epidemiological link to the meningococcal disease outbreak at OSU but the investigation is still ongoing.
Benton County Health Department offer the following information to Linus Pauling families:
- Customarily individuals who have spent at least four hours cumulatively in close, face-to-face association with a person suffering from meningococcal disease within seven days before the illness started are at highest risk of catching meningococcal disease.
- While this information can be concerning, please remember that meningococcal disease in not highly contagious.
- Symptoms specific to this disease are sudden onset of a high fever, headache, exhaustion, nausea, rash, stiff neck, vomiting and diarrhea. If your child is experiencing these symptoms, it is important to seek urgent, same day evaluation at your child’s physician’s office or an urgent care medical clinic or emergency room.
- The disease is transmitted through direct contact with droplets from coughing or sneezing; kissing or contact with mucus or saliva from an ill person’s nose or throat; or by sharing of eating and drinking utensils or vaping and smoking devices. In the course of the investigation, health officials will identify individuals who were in close contact with the ill person and, if warranted, give them preventive antibiotic treatment.
- It is important to make sure that your child is up-to-date on all recommended vaccinations, including the recommended age-appropriate meningococcal vaccine, especially during flu season and with the upcoming school exclusion deadline in February.
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