Im Not A College Student Do I Still Need This Vaccine
The meningitis vaccine âis also a good idea for travelers who go to certain parts of sub-Saharan Africa, the so-called meningitis belt,â Schaffner says. Itâs also recommended for anyone with a damaged spleen, people whose spleen has been removed, people with terminal complement component deficiency , anyone who might have been exposed to meningitis during an outbreak, and microbiologists who routinely work with meningococcal bacteria.
William Schaffner, MD, president, National Foundation for Infectious Diseases professor, chairman, department of preventive medicine, professor of medicine, division of infectious diseases, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.
CDC: âMeningococcal Vaccines: What You Need to Know.â
Determine If The Law Applies
1. Does the Bacterial Meningitis law apply to me?
YES, if you are
NO, you are exempt if you are:
2. How to comply with the law
- Submit proof of having received the bacterial meningitis vaccination within the last 5 years. OR
- Opt out of the vaccine by submitting an exemption form based on medical reasons, conscientious objection or taking only online courses.
Special Considerations For Concomitant Use Of Menactra And Dtap
Children can receive Menactra® before or concomitantly with diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and acellular pertussis vaccines. This timing avoids interference with the immunologic response to the meningococcal vaccine antigens that occurs when administering Menactra® after DTaP. Alternatively, children can receive Menveo® or MenQuadfi®, regardless of timing of DTaP vaccination.
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Who Needs To Get Vaccinated For Meningitis
Its especially important for you to keep all of your meningitis vaccinations up-to-date if you fall into a high-risk category for getting the disease. High-risk categories include:
- Certain Ages. Infants less than one-year-old and young adults between the ages of 16 and 21 are the most likely to develop meningitis. Its most important to have all boosters and available vaccinations at these ages.
- Crowded Settings. Large group settings like college campuses are where outbreaks of meningitis are the most common. Get your vaccines up-to-date before entering into these settings for extended periods of time.
- Certain underlying conditions. Some underlying medical conditions can increase your chance of getting meningitis. These include HIV and other conditions that weaken your immune system. Not having a spleen also places you at higher risk.
- Work that involves meningitis-causing agents. Microbiologists and any other researchers that regularly come into contact with the bacteria and viruses that cause meningitis are consistently at risk.
- Travel to certain areas. Some areas in the world like sub-Saharan Africa have higher rates of meningitis and the pathogens that cause it. Check with your doctor before traveling to new parts of the world.
Are Students Required To Get Meningococcal Vaccine Before College
Yes. Massachusetts law requires the following students receive quadrivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine :
- Secondary School : newly enrolled full-time students who will be living in a dormitory or other congregate housing licensed or approved by the secondary school must provide documentation of having received a dose of meningococcal conjugate vaccine at any time in the past.
- Postsecondary Institutions : newly enrolled full-time students 21 years of age and younger must provide documentation of having received a dose of quadrivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine on or after their 16th birthday, regardless of housing status.
Immunizations should be obtained prior to enrollment or registration however, students may be enrolled or registered provided that the required immunizations are obtained within 30 days of registration. There is no requirement for meningococcal B vaccination. However, adolescents and young adults may also be vaccinated with a serogroup B meningococcal vaccine, preferably at 16 through 18 years of age, to provide short term protection for most strains of serogroup B meningococcal disease.
More information about requirements and exemptions may be found in the MDPH document Information about Meningococcal Disease, Meningococcal Vaccines, Vaccination Requirements and the Waiver for Students at Colleges and Residential Schools.
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Who Should Not Get A Meningococcal Vaccine
Your preteen or teen shouldn’t get the meningococcal vaccine if they:
- Has had a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction to a meningococcal vaccine before or to any vaccine component
- Is moderately or severely ill
- Has ever had Guillain-Barre syndrome
Pregnant women can get the meningococcal vaccine, but it’s only recommended for those with certain immune problems or those likely to be exposed to meningitis. With the newer MCV4 and MenB vaccines, there hasn’t been as much study in pregnant women compared to the MPSV4 vaccine.
How You Can Prevent Meningitis
The single most effective way to prevent contracting meningitis is a vaccination. Some colleges may even require that incoming students be vaccinated before arriving. There are two different vaccines to prevent it. The first vaccine, MenACWY, protects against bacteria A, C, W, and Y. It is typically administered to children ages 11 to 12. A booster shot is recommended before attending college, if you have already received it.
There is also a second shot, which protects against meningitis B. This shot is recommended for 16- to 23-year-olds. That age bracket fits incoming college students. If you are unsure of your vaccination history, you can contact your doctor to see if you received MenACWY or not to find out if you need a booster. Plus, you can talk about getting your meningitis B vaccine as well.
Because colleges tend to be in close quarters, and everyone is near each other most of the time, meningitis can spread like wildfire. That is why you need a vaccination for protection against it when you are ready to attend college.
Ensure youre protected before going to college with a meningitis vaccine from Passport Health. Call or book online to schedule your appointment today.
Jennifer Passmore is a stay-at-home mom, writer and beader. She loves creating art with her words and through her jewelry. She is also a passionate mental health advocate. You can find more writing at her website Positivity In Pain.
Filed Under: General Posts
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What Are The Side Effects Of Meningococcal Vaccines
Mild side effects happen in about half those who get the vaccine. They may include redness or pain where the skin was injected. These side effects last no longer than 1 or 2 days.
Serious side effects are rare and can include high fever, weakness, and changes in behavior.
Severe allergic reactions may happen within minutes or hours of having the vaccination. These are signs of an allergic reaction:
Students Under 22 Years Of Age Who Will Take Any Face
Documentation must be submitted at least 10 days prior to the student’s first in-person class.
Effective Jan. 1, 2014, state law requires students who will be under age 22 on their first day of class at a public, private or independent institution of higher education in Texas to provide proof of immunization for bacterial meningitis. The vaccination or booster dose must have been received during the five years prior to enrollment and at least ten days before the start of classes.
Students who have been previously enrolled at Texas State and are enrolling following a break in enrollment of at least one fall or spring semester will be subject to the vaccination requirement. Students transferring from another institution of higher education will also be subject to the vaccination requirement.
Texas State requires you to meet this requirement before you will be allowed to register for classes.
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How Is Meningitis Contracted
According to the CDC, you are at risk of contracting meningitis because of large gatherings in close quarters, just like college dorms, fraternities, sorority houses and more. It can also be caught by sharing silverware with an infected person, kissing, coughing, and living in a close household are all ways of contracting the disease.
What If There Is A Serious Problem
An allergic reaction could occur after the vaccinated person leaves the clinic. If you see signs of a severe allergic reaction , call 9-1-1 and get the person to the nearest hospital.
For other signs that concern you, call your health care provider.
Adverse reactions should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System . Your health care provider will usually file this report, or you can do it yourself. Visit the VAERS website at www.vaers.hhs.gov or call 1-800-822-7967. VAERS is only for reporting reactions, and VAERS staff members do not give medical advice.
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Meningitis Vaccine And Adults: Expert Q& a
Who needs the meningitis vaccine and when.
Meningitis is usually caused by an infection that attacks the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. The most serious types of meningitis can result in brain damage or even death.
Most parents know children should be vaccinated against meningitis before they go to college, where the crowded, sometimes less-than-sanitary dorm life makes it easier to spread meningitis bacteria through respiratory and throat secretions.
Young adults entering the military need the vaccine for the same reason. Certain other adults may need it, too.
William Schaffner, MD, president of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases and a professor in Vanderbilt University School of Medicineâs infectious diseases division and chair of the schoolâs department of preventive medicine, discussed this vaccine with WebMD.
Menacwy Vaccination Of Younger Children And Adults At Increased Risk
In certain situations, younger children and adults should receive MenACWY vaccines. Some people are at increased risk for serogroup A, C, W, or Y meningococcal disease due to
- Having certain medical conditions
Those who remain at increased risk need regular booster doses.
- For children under the age of 7 years, administer a booster dose 3 years after completion of the primary series and every 5 years thereafter.
- For children 7 years old or older and adults, administer a booster dose 5 years after completion of the primary series and every 5 years thereafter.
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Is Meningococcal Disease Serious
Meningococcal meningitis and bloodstream infections can be very serious, even deadly. The infections progress quickly. Someone can go from being healthy to very ill in 48 hours or less. Even if they get treatment, about 10 to 15 out of 100 people with meningococcal disease will die from it. Long-term disabilities from having meningococcal disease include loss of limbs, deafness, nervous system problems, and brain damage.
Is It Too Late To Get Vaccinated
The answer to this question isnt so clear-cut. If you have an unvaccinated teen headed off to college, there is still time for them to get their vaccines. Your child may also need another shot if they had the vaccine as a preteen. Meningitis vaccines are thought to only last for about five years, according to the Center for Young Womens Health.
Adults can also get the meningitis vaccine if their doctors recommend it. Certain situations can warrant the use of meningitis vaccinations. Examples include spleen removal, going to military camp, or traveling overseas.
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Common And Local Adverse Events
Conjugate meningococcal vaccines
Injection site reactions occur in up to 59% of vaccinees. Fever is reported in up to 5% of recipients and systemic reactions, such as headache and malaise, are reported in up to 60% of recipients.
Mild reactions, including injection site reactions , occur in up to 50% of vaccine recipients. Irritability occurs in up to 80% of infants and fever in up to 9% when other vaccines were administered. Headaches and malaise occur in up to 10% of older children and adults. These reactions last no more than a few days.
Serogroup B Meningococcal vaccines
Solicited local and systemic reactions have been commonly reported in clinical trials and include injection site tenderness, induration, sleepiness and irritability. Higher rates of fever have been observed with simultaneous administration of 4CMenB vaccine and routine infant vaccines therefore, routine prophylactic administration of acetaminophen or separating 4CMenB vaccination from routine vaccination schedule has been proposed for preventing fever in infants and children up to three years of age.
Solicited local and systemic reactions have been commonly reported in clinical trials and include injection site tenderness, induration and irritability.
When To Get Vaccinations Against Bacterial Causes Of Meningitis
Meningitis is a disease thats defined by inflammation in membranes called meninges near your brain and spinal cord. It can have several different causes including viruses, bacteria, fungi, and some chemicals.
Different vaccines can protect you from the different causes of meningitis. Each has its own schedule for when you should receive it. Youll first get some of these vaccinations as an infant and others as a teenager or even as an adult. Many require boosters at various points throughout your life particularly if youre in a high-risk category for getting meningitis.
In general, vaccines are most helpful for protecting against bacterial meningitis, which is less common but more severe than viral meningitis.
Meningococcal vaccines protect against the meningitis-causing bacteria N. meningitidis. Two vaccines are currently approved for use in the U.S. Theyre called the MenACWY vaccine and the MenB vaccine.
The MenACWY vaccine is recommended for all young adults around the age of 11 or 12 years old plus a booster shot at 16 years. Another meningococcal vaccine called MenB is recommended between the ages of 16 to 18.
A good question to ask is: how long does the meningitis vaccine last? Even though both meningococcal vaccines produce an immune response, they lose effectiveness over time.
Healthy adults wont require another dose of this vaccine. But you should talk to your doctor about getting another pneumococcal vaccine if youre 65 years or older.
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How Are The Bacteria Spread
These bacteria are passed from person-to-person through saliva . You must be in close contact with an infected persons saliva in order for the bacteria to spread. Close contact includes activities such as kissing, sharing water bottles, sharing eating/drinking utensils or sharing cigarettes with someone who is infected or being within 3-6 feet of an infected person who is coughing or sneezing.
Cdc Does Not Routinely Recommend A Menb Vaccine For All Teens And Young Adults However All Teens May Get Vaccinated Preferably At 16 To 18 Years Old
Serogroup B meningococcal disease is relatively rare. Outbreaks have occurred at several U.S. colleges during the past decade. CDCs current recommendation gives people access to MenB vaccines to help prevent this uncommon, but serious illness. However, doctors and parents should discuss the risk of the disease and weigh the risks and benefits of vaccination. Available data suggest these vaccines are safe and provide protection, but that protection decreases fairly quickly after vaccination.
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Who Should Get The Meningococcal Vaccines
All children ages 11 through 12 years should receive meningococcal vaccine followed by a booster dose at age 16 years. Vaccination is also recommended for all adolescents ages 13 through 18 years who did not receive a dose at age 11-12 years.
Individuals ages 2 months and older who have certain conditions that weaken their immune system should receive meningococcal vaccine, including teens who are HIV positive. These persons should also receive booster shots every three to five years depending on their age. Talk to your health care provider if your preteen or teen has a condition that makes it harder for their body to fight off infection.
The MenB vaccine may also be given at age 16 years along with the MenACWY booster dose. MenB vaccine is also recommended for children age 10 years and older with certain high-risk conditions. The number of doses needed depends on the product used and if your child has a high-risk condition. Talk to your health care provider about this additional vaccine.
How Effective Is It
A 2021 study examined Bexsero using data from Quebec, Italy, the United Kingdom, Portugal, and South Australia to determine its safety and effectiveness.
The researchers found that meningitis B rates decreased by 50 to 100 percent in vaccine-eligible populations. The vaccines were found to be 79 to 100 percent effective in people who received two or more doses.
Clinical trials have found promising results for Trumenba as well. is needed to understand its true effectiveness, but researchers believe that it can also provide a high level of protection.
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