Oregon State students face Thursday deadline to get Meningococcal B vaccine

A meningococcal b strain outbreak has been declared on the Oregon State University campus, and now a clinic is being held to vaccinate students. (SBG photo)

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University wants all students age 25 and under on the Corvallis campus to be vaccinated against Meningococcal B by Feb. 15.

OSU will hold vaccination clinics Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday on campus.

Students who do not meet the deadline may not be allowed to register for spring term.

"This requirement went into effect because six OSU students have been diagnosed with the disease since November 2016," the university said in a statement. "To date, 48 percent of OSU students 25 and under have completed the vaccination requirement."

University officials are pleased with the response so far.

“This is a tremendous response by our students, but we are not done,” said Steve Clark, vice president for University Relations and Marketing. “We want to do all that we can to enable students to meet this important public health requirement. We remain ready to assist all of them in any way we can.”

The clinics will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. No appointment is required.

Students can check in at the Student Experience Center Plaza outside the Memorial Union.

"Students should attend regardless of insurance coverage, and staff will be available to discuss options," the university said in a statement.

OSU officials said more than 9,000 students still need to get a final dose or provide documentation that they have completed their vaccinations before Feb. 15 to meet the requirement and avoid a registration hold for spring term.

“We are working very closely with OSU administration and other local and statewide partners to communicate the urgency of getting vaccinated and staying watchful for early signs of meningococcal disease symptoms,” said Charlie Fautin, deputy director of the Benton County Health Department. “Meningococcal B disease is a serious condition and the situation can get critical rapidly. We are grateful for the rapid response of students and their families that sought care immediately because it has resulted in recovery outcomes to date, but the best way to prevent meningococcal disease is by vaccination.”

Meningococcal B disease is uncommon but serious: In 10 to 15 percent of cases, the disease can prove fatal. A University of Oregon student-athlete died from it in 2015.

In another 20 percent of cases, victims face serious consequences like hearing loss, mental impairment and loss of limbs.

Learn more about Oregon State's vaccination services.

For more information regarding the university’s new vaccination requirement and exemptions, call the Office of Student Life, 541-737-6362 (MENB).

For more information regarding the meningococcal B vaccination, dosing or for medical information, call OSU Student Health Services, 541-737-7570.

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