This message comes to you as an update on the meningococcal disease outbreak at the University of Oregon, including some recommendations for you for the upcoming spring break when we expect many UofO students to head home to other areas of the state.
There is an outbreak of serogroup B meningococcal disease at the University of Oregon. There have been 5 confirmed cases among University of Oregon undergraduates since January of this year, one of which was fatal. Ongoing vaccination efforts have vaccinated about 9,000 undergraduates to date, but the goal is to vaccinate all (22,000) undergraduates, and all University of Oregon graduate students and staff with immune deficiencies.
What you need to know:
- Both Trumenba (Pfizer) and Bexsero (Novartis) vaccines are available on the private market for providers to purchase.
- Spring break is Friday, March 20th through Sunday, March 29th. Students may be returning home and seeking vaccination or may present to care.
- Current standing orders exist for pharmacies to vaccinate all University of Oregon undergraduates due to the outbreak.
- Undergraduate students of any age from other colleges/universities who live at the 13th & Olive apartments (Capstone buildings) in Eugene are also covered by the standing orders.
- Others who should be vaccinated are staff or graduate students at the University of Oregon who live in campus residence halls, fraternities or sororities, or who are high risk (those with asplenia, sickle cell disease, or terminal complement component deficiency).
- Serogroup B vaccine is available at Walgreens, Safeway and Albertsons stores near the University of Oregon. Individuals seeking vaccination outside the Eugene area should call ahead to their local pharmacy, and if the vaccine is not in stock it can be ordered within a day or so.
- Most insurance companies, including Oregon’s Medicaid CCO Plans, have been paying for the vaccine as given by local pharmacies.
- Some students may be seeking the first dose, or the second dose. Individuals should stick with one vaccine brand for the series whenever possible.
- All students who have had the disease to date did not present with classic meningeal signs, but with disseminated meningococcal disease found on blood culture. Other presenting symptoms include fever and rash.
Please be aware of this situation and let returning students and concerned parents know where they can get vaccinated, and who the vaccine is currently recommended for.
Will the newly licensed mening B vaccines be available through the Vaccines For Children (VFC) program?
Yes, probably in late April. We will keep you posted. The vaccines will be available for any VFC-eligible child (through age 18) with one of the high-risk conditions listed in our current model standing order. Those are:
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR USE
- Approved for the following high‐risk individuals ≥10 years of age. Those with:
functional or anatomic asplenia
sickle cell disease
terminal complement component deficiency (e.g., C5–C9, properidin, factor H, factor D,
and patients taking Eculizumab [Soliris®]) AND
microbiologists who work routinely with isolates of Neisseria meningitidis
- B. University of Oregon outbreak control (expires 6/30/2015):
Approved for the following individuals ≥11 years of age:
- University of Oregon undergraduate students.
- University of Oregon graduate students, faculty and staff who:
- live in campus residence halls, fraternities, or sororities
- who are at high risk (see above)
3.) Undergraduate students of any college living in the 13th & Olive apartments
(Capstone Buildings), including but not limited to undergraduates from the University
of Oregon, Lane Community College, and Northwest Christian University
- Others may be vaccinated only with a specific physician prescription.
Where can I find the current recommendations for the new vaccines?
You can find all of our model standing orders here: https://public.health.oregon.gov/preventionwellness/vaccinesimmunization/immunizationproviderresources/pages/stdgordr.aspx
Should we have vaccine on hand now?
That is a decision for each clinic/health system/pharmacist. Both vaccines are currently available for purchase on the private market.
I have questions; whom should I call?
Your local health department! You can find contact information here: https://public.health.oregon.gov/ProviderPartnerResources/LocalHealthDepartmentResources/Pages/lhd.aspx