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SDSU considers making Meningitis-B vaccine mandatory for all students

Move comes after outbreak on campus this fall
Posted: 7:56 AM, Nov 15, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-15 13:33:15-05
SDSU may make Meningitis-B vaccine mandatory
SDSU may make Meningitis-B vaccine mandatory

SAN DIEGO (KGTV): San Diego State University may require all students to have the Meningitis-B vaccine beginning in the fall of 2019.

The University is in preliminary discussions about the idea after an outbreak made three students sick on campus this fall.

A university spokesperson confirmed to 10News that the school is in the very early stages of the idea. A statement from the school says it stems from "continued conversations with the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency," and that "the safety and wellbeing of all SDSU students remains the priority."

The Cal State University system doesn't require the Meningitis-B vaccine. Their guidelines say that schools only need to "inform incoming freshmen living on-campus about the Meningococcal disease and provide information on available vaccines."

However, according to SDSU, "The California State University Office of the Chancellor is engaging in the review and consultation process necessary to update the existing policy." The CSU systemwide policy can be found here .

This fall's outbreak was the second instance of the disease in the last four years on campus. In 2014, a student died from Meningitis-B.

The disease has similar symptoms to a cold or flu. It can be fatal. In other cases, people who get the disease suffer brain damage, hearing loss or the loss of limbs, fingers or toes.

During the most recent outbreak, the University supplied antibiotics to students who were in close contact with the ones who'd been infected. The school also held vaccination clinics on campus.

Some students had to get a second vaccination after the school discovered that several doses of the vaccine weren't properly stored. Those vaccines were administered by Walgreens, who also was responsible for their storage. It affected approximately 350 students.

Here is the full text of the statement that SDSU sent to 10News about their discussions to make the Meningitis-B vaccine mandatory: 

Following continued conversations with the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA), and as part of our partnership with HHSA, San Diego State University is in preliminary discussions within the university about the possibility of adding the Meningococcal B (MenB) vaccine to the set of required vaccinations for incoming students.

The California State University Office of the Chancellor is engaging in the review and consultation process necessary to update the existing policy.

CSU’s systemwide vaccine policy is explained in Executive Order 803.  The vaccine against MenB is currently not required.

Approved by the FDA in 2014 and 2015, both MenB vaccines (Trumenba and Bexsero) are relatively new. In contrast, many college students have received a vaccine (Menveo or Menactra) that protects against the four other serogroups of meningococcal disease (A, C, W, Y).

The safety and wellbeing of all SDSU students remains the priority.