Meningitis vaccine for college students

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(KPLR) – College students prepare for life in the dorms, academics and a new social life, but how prepared are they when it comes to their health? How updated are their vaccinations, specifically, the meningitis vaccine?

Missouri State Senator Gina Walsh and Dr. Sandra McKay spoke with Christine Buck about the importance of getting the meningitis vaccine.

There is a difference between viral and bacterial meningitis. Bacterial is extremely dangerous.

Meningitis is common in infants less than one year old and young adults ages 16 to 21. College freshmen living in dorms are at increased risk.

Bacterial meningitis affects the lining of the brain and spinal cord. Symptoms include severe headaches, fever, altered mental states, sensitivity to light and vomiting.

Missouri Senate Bill 421 would require all college students living ion campus to get a meningitis vaccine shot, unless the student has a medical or religious exemption.

To follow the status of Senator Walsh's legislative actions, visit her Senate website at www.senate.mo.gov/walsh