A Georgetown University undergraduate student has died from apparent bacterial meningitis, according to an email sent to the campus community today.

Meningitis symptoms/Public domain image/Mikael Häggström
Meningitis symptoms/Public domain image/Mikael Häggström

Georgetown’s vice president for student affairs, Todd A. Olson and Vice President for Mission and Ministry, Kevin O’Brien, S.J. wrote that a school of nursing and health studies student, Andrea Jaime has died from “apparent meningitis”. “We are awaiting test results to confirm the exact cause. As we shared in a message to the community earlier today, proper medical precautions have been taken and members of the campus community do not need to take additional action at this time.”

“This is difficult news for the many members of the Georgetown community who know Andrea,” Olson and O’Brien wrote. “Georgetown officials have been in touch with Andrea’s family and will continue to provide support and assistance to them. Please join us in remembering Andrea’s family and friends in your thoughts and prayers during this time.”

Bacterial meningitis is usually severe. While most people with meningitis recover, it can cause serious complications, such as brain damage, hearing loss, or learning disabilities.

There are several pathogens (types of germs) that can cause bacterial meningitis. Some of the leading causes of bacterial meningitis in the United States include Haemophilus influenzae(most often caused by type b, Hib), Streptococcus pneumoniae, group B Streptococcus, Listeria monocytogenes, and Neisseria meningitidis.

In the United States, about 4,100 cases of bacterial meningitis, including 500 deaths, occurred each year between 2003–2007.

According to her Facebook page, Andrea’s hometown was Bogota, Colombia.