A Wake Forest University student was diagnosed Monday, Oct. 4, with bacterial meningitis, a contagious illness caused by the bacteria Neisseria meningitidis.
The student, Ann Marie Collins of Glastonbury, Conn., was listed in stable condition Monday afternoon at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.
Immediately after the diagnosis, Wake Forest officials began identifying and notifying students and others who have had close contact with the student, a junior who lives in a campus residence hall. For instance, the university’s Residence Life and Housing office scheduled a meeting Monday evening to meet with students who live in the same area of the residence hall as the student.
The university’s Student Health Service is consulting with local public health officials and the division of infectious diseases at the medical center.
The Student Health Service is contacting and encouraging those who have had close contact with Collins in the past seven to 10 days to visit the health service to receive a preventative antibiotic. The antibiotic provided will be a single tablet of Ciprofloxacin, also known as Cipro.
“We are taking a number of steps to identify and inform those who should take the antibiotic,” said Dr. Cecil Price, director of the Student Health Service.
The Student Health Service describes close contact with the student as including:
- A roommate, suitemate or hallmate.
- Anyone who shared eating utensils or drinking glasses/cups with the student in the past seven to 10 days.
- Anyone who has spent more than four hours with the student in a close space (such as a residence hall room) in the past seven to 10 days.
Those who have had casual contact with Collins, such as sitting in the same classroom or passing the student in a hallway or on campus, do not require the antibiotic treatment, Price said.
Those on campus with additional questions about the matter are encouraged to call the Student Health Service at 758-5218. People may also call the Forsyth County Health Department at 727-8231.
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