Meningitis Prevention and Treatment
Is bacterial meningitis preventable?
While a vaccine is available, it is not 100 percent effective. Also, there is no effective vaccine for the "type B" bacterial meningitis strain, which accounted for seven instances of bacterial meningitis on the Ohio University campus in the 2009 calendar year. Type B bacterial meningitis typically occurs in young adults and the incidence of disease increases during winter and spring.
Who should be vaccinated?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends vaccination for college freshmen living in residence halls, but the vaccination is not currently required by the state of Ohio or Ohio University. Ohio University will require all students to be vaccinated against bacterial meningitis beginning in fall 2010.
According to recent statistics, 68 percent of Ohio University's on-campus residential population reported that they have had the bacterial meningitis vaccination. An annual survey by the American College Health Association reported 62 percent of U.S. college students have been vaccinated.
Where can I get the vaccination?
The Campus Care Clinic offers bacterial meningitis vaccinations Monday through Friday by appointment. There may be a fee; the cost will be billed to students' insurance carriers and any copays or bills not covered by insurance will be assessed to the students' accounts. To learn more and to schedule an appointment, call (740) 593-1660.
What should I do if I come in contact with bacterial meningitis?
Antibiotics are used as an effective prevention strategy for intimate contacts of a known or suspected case. When identified, these contacts should be careful to get immediate medical attention at the first sign of illness, up to 10 days after the time of potential exposure.
What should I do if I get sick?
Seek medical attention immediately. Early diagnosis and immediate treatment are key in treating bacterial meningitis.
Who is at risk and how great is the risk for meningitis?
What is meningitis and how does the University respond?
More information about the disease and the University's response is available at www.ohio.edu/healthalerts/meningitis/.