October 4, 2012
The Health Department issued recommendations today for vaccinating against invasive meningococcal disease -- commonly known as meningitis -- after a spike of cases reported over the past five weeks. The Department is advising vaccinations for any man who is HIV positive and has had intimate contact with another man that he met through a website, digital application ("App"), or at a bar or party since September 1, 2012. Vaccine will be available starting Friday at medical facilities throughout the city for men who meet these criteria but who cannot obtain it from their HIV care providers.
The outbreak of invasive meningococcal disease among HIV-positive men in New York City is completely unrelated to the outbreak of meningitis in several states that is caused by a contaminated medication.
Vaccination prevents but does not treat current infection. Common symptoms of meningitis are high fever, headache, stiff neck, and rash that develop rapidly upon onset. Symptoms may occur 2 to 10 days after exposure, but usually within 5 days. People who are HIV-positive and who experience these symptoms should seek medical care immediately.
Vaccine locations at select HIV clinics in Health and Hospitals Corporation sites:
To find an HIV care provider or location to get a vaccine call 311. For more information search "Meningitis" at www.nyc.gov.
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