FORT WALTON BEACH, FL (WKRG) – The diagnosis of meningococcus in 2022 exceeded the average for 5 years of cases of meningococcal disease in Florida, according to the Florida Department of Health in Ocalusa County.
The county is offering free vaccines to those aged 18 and over at Fort Walton Beach from June 24. Appointments must be made by calling 850-833-9246.
“It’s a serious disease caused by bacteria called Neisseria meningitidisSaid from the health department.
The rare disease is not as contagious as the common cold or flu. The department said close contact over a long period of time, including kissing and sharing drinks, could lead to the spread of bacteria. The bacteria are located in the back of the throat.
“People don’t catch bacteria by accidental contact or by breathing air where someone with meningococcal disease has been.
Florida Department of Health in Ocalusa County
The department has issued a list of groups to consider the vaccine:
- Men who have sex with men aged 18 and over
- People living with HIV aged 18 and over
- LGBTQ + aged 18 and over
- Immunocompromised persons over 18 years of age
- People from all the groups listed above who received their MenACWY vaccine more than 5 years ago.
- A stiff neck
- Light sensitivity
Florida offers a website full of information about vaccines.
The CDC said that 10 percent of the population are carriers of meningococcal bacteria.
Out of 100 people with meningococcal disease, 10 to 15 die. An additional 10 to 20 suffer from disability (hearing loss, brain damage, kidney damage, limb loss, nervous system problems, severe scars from a skin graft).
Center for Disease Control and Prevention