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Know The Risks of MenB Among College Students

By Danielle Wirsansky

GSK is a science-led global healthcare company with a special purpose: to help people do more, feel better, live longer. It is a company that college students should get to know because they want to help college students out. How? By raising awareness about meningitis and the vaccines that exist to prevent it.

According to a recent press release, Meningitis has, in recent years, become a killer across campuses. College campuses have quickly become hotbeds for meningitis outbreaks as viral and bacterial diseases flourish in these types of environments, which puts students at high risk of catching the disease.

Studies by the CDC have proven that meningitis is a scourge across campuses, showing “From 2011 through March 2019, meningitis B caused all US college meningococcal outbreaks, involving 13 campuses, 50 cases, and two deaths among an at-risk population of approximately 253,000 students. A number of colleges and universities have taken a stand against the disease, recommending or requiring that incoming students get vaccinated before the school year.”

Students should know that there are two different types of vaccines available to help protect against the five-vaccine preventable groups of meningitis – A, C, W, Y, and B.4. Most students should have received a meningitis ACWY vaccine. However, they may not have gotten a meningitis B vaccine because it was not available until late 2014. Further studies show that as of 2019, only 17.2 percent of 17-year-olds have received a meningitis B vaccine.

These cases and outbreaks are hard to predict, so keep your student safe by making sure that their vaccinations are up to date. Meningitis has few early onset symptoms, but once the disease sets in, it progresses quickly. As it attacks the brain, it is often a debilitating disease and can even be fatal.

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