If you are the parent of a student aged 11 to 18 years old, North Thurston Public Schools wants to be sure you are aware that your student, and particularly adolescents entering high school and/or college, are at increased risk for a potentially fatal bacterial infection called meningococcal disease.This bacterial infection can lead to meningitis, which causes swelling of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord, or to a serious blood infection.
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now recommends meningococcal vaccination at:
• 11 to 12 years old during the pre-adolescent doctor's visit, or
• High school entry, or for
• College freshmen living in dormitories.
Up to 83 percent of meningococcal infections among this age group are potentially vaccine-preventable. Vaccination is safe and effective, and can protect individuals against four of the five serogroups (A, C, Y, and W-135) of N. meningitides, the bacterium that causes meningococcal disease.
We encourage you and your adolescent or college-bound child to learn more about this disease and to speak with your physician about vaccination.Attached is additional information about meningococcal disease and vaccination.You can also visit the following web sites: