DHEC working with school after meningitis death in Pickens Co.

PICKENS CO., SC (WSPA) – A student at Gettys Middle School has died from bacterial meningitis, according to Pickens Co. Schools.

They say they are taking all necessary precautions and grief counselors will be at the school.

DHEC says they have been working with school administration on precautions.

They safe it is safe for your child to maintain his or her normal school schedule as long as they are healthy.

They say meningitis is the swelling of inflammation of the tissue covering the spinal cord and brain.

They say preventive antibiotic treatment or vaccination is not recommended for those who have been in contact with the type of bacterial meningitis that has been reported in this case.

It may be spread by direct contact with an infected person’s saliva or mucus or it may occur in people who are temporary “carriers” of certain bacteria.

They say carriers only rarely become sick.

Good hand washing helps prevent the spread of bacteria.

Symptoms may include sudden onset of fever, headache and stiff neck. They say the person would have difficulty bending his or her neck to touch the chin to the chest.

Other symptoms include sensitivity to light, confusion, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite.

If your child has any of these symptoms you should take the to a health care provider immediately.

A meningitis vaccine is available, but not required for students who aren’t in college.  However, the CDC recommends meningococcal vaccination for all preteens and teens.  The vaccine Menactra® or Menveo® is available for all preteens and teens at 11 to 12 years old, with a booster dose at 16 years old. Teens and young adults (16 through 23 year olds) also may be vaccinated with a serogroup B meningococcal vaccine.


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