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CDC acknowledges "outbreak" of meningococcal disease in Florida

Three confirmed cases of disease in Leon County
Meningococcal disease
Posted at 7:50 PM, Apr 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-11 17:28:25-04

(WTXL) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has acknowledged an outbreak of meningococcal disease in Florida.

The CDC adds the outbreak is primarily among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men, including those living with HIV.

The disease has also affected some who have traveled to the state.

In response to an ongoing outbreak of meningococcal disease in Florida, state health officials are recommending all gay and bisexual men living in the state get vaccinated with one dose of a MenACWY vaccine to help protect against meningococcal disease.

Florida health officials are also emphasizing the importance of routine vaccination against meningococcal disease for people with HIV. For the best protection, people with HIV should make sure they have gotten their 2-dose primary series of a MenACWY vaccine and are up to date with booster doses.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Leon County branch of the Florida Department of Health said as of Wednesday that there have been no new cases of meningococcal disease documented in Leon County.

“We stand at three confirmed cases in individuals in Tallahassee aged 18 to 22. DOH Leon continues to emphasize that getting vaccinated is the best way to protect against this disease, and that the Department offers meningococcal disease vaccines,” the department of health said in a news release to ABC 27 Wednesday.

The Florida Department of Health Leon County announced Friday, April 1 it confirmed three cases of the disease in the county.

The department notes due to data and privacy protection laws, DOH Leon is restricted on providing any additional information on the populations that are impacted, directly or indirectly, by this disease.

An official with Florida State University acknowledged to ABC 27 Thursday that the department of health confirmed one case of meningococcal disease within the FSU population on Friday, April 1.

The official was unaware of the status of that case or if there were any additional cases of meningococcal disease within the FSU population.

An official with Tallahassee Community College noted Thursday there are no confirmed cases of meningococcal disease on TCC's campus.

As of Thursday evening, a request for comment on the status of the disease on its campus was not returned by Florida A&M University.

The CDC says Florida health officials recommend anyone with HIV, who are gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men along with individuals previously mentioned who have received the MenACWY vaccine more than five years ago to get vaccinated.

The two types of meningococcal infections are meningitis, which impacts the lining of the brain and spinal cord, and bloodstream infection.

Individuals who want to be vaccinated for the disease may schedule an appointment with the Florida Department of Health Leon County by calling 850-404-6403.