Meningococcal Disease Outbreaks

Breaking News – 2 cases of MenB at Rutgers University-New Brunswick in New Jersey (see below).

Meningitis B vaccination poster during an outbreak at Princeton.

There are two types of meningococcal vaccines that can help prevent meningococcal disease, including:

  • Menactra and Menveo – meningococcal conjugate vaccines that protect against serogroups A, C, W, Y
  • Bexsero and Trumenba – meningococcal conjugate vaccines that only  protect against serogroup B

And while children routinely get their first dose of either Menactra or Menveo when they are 11 to 12 years old and a booster at age 16 years, the MenB vaccines only have a “permissive” recommendation.

That means that there isn’t a formal recommendation that all kids get Bexsero or Trumenba. Instead, older teens and young adults between the ages of 16 and 23 years can get vaccinated if they want to protect themselves from most strains of serogroup B meningococcal disease.

Anyone exposed to someone with meningococcal disease will also likely get antibiotics to decrease the chance that they get sick.

Meningococcal Disease Outbreaks

Although the CDC reports that the incidence of menB disease is low, there have been over ten outbreaks of menB disease on college campuses since 2013, including:

The latest cases are at Rutgers University-New Brunswick in New Jersey – 2 cases of MenB (2019).

What to Know About Meningococcal Disease Outbreaks

Meningococcal disease is not common, but the effects of this vaccine-preventable disease disease can be devastating, which is why experts work to quickly get outbreaks under control.

More on Meningococcal Disease Outbreaks

Updated on March 14, 2019

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