From WILL - Focus -

Preventing a meningitis outbreak

Last week, a meningitis vaccine that is unapproved by the FDA was made available to Princeton students in an effort to stop an outbreak of the disease from getting worse. This hour on Focus, we’ll talk about why the outbreak prompted such concern and why college students are most commonly affected by meningitis.

Listen to the Program

(Duration: 51:57)

 Renee Galloway, a microbiologist in the Centers for Disease Control’s Meningitis and Special Pathogens Branch (MSPB), in the National Center for Infectious Diseases (NCID), was shown here running a Pulsed-field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) analy

Renee Galloway, a microbiologist in the Centers for Disease Control’s Meningitis and Special Pathogens Branch (MSPB), in the National Center for Infectious Diseases (NCID), was shown here running a Pulsed-field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) analytical test, which is used in the typing of bacterial organisms. The Meningitis and Special Pathogens Branch is responsible for monitoring an eclectic group of bacterial infections and disease syndromes of public health importance. The branch is organized into programs on meningitis, which focuses on Neisseria meningitidis, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and Haemophilus influenzae, vaccine-preventable diseases of childhood, which deals with Bordetella pertussis and Corynebacterium diphtheriae, zoonotic pathogens, which works with Bacillus anthracis, Wikimedia Commons

Meningitis infections are considered medical emergencies because many are life threatening. Dr. Tom Clark, who heads meningitis prevention and surveillance at the Centers for Disease Control, was on campus at Princeton University last week when university officials started administering a vaccine for meningitis b that’s not normally available in the US. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with him about the disease and why 8 confirmed cases of the disease prompted officials had to bring a non-FDA approved vaccine to the states.

During this hour on Focus, Brandon Meline of the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District also joins the show. A new Illinois law will make meningitis vaccination mandatory for 6th and 12th grade students starting January 1st of next year.

Categories: Health, Public Health