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State Confirms 7th Meningococcal Case Linked To University of Oregon Outbreak

Jes Burns

Oregon Health Officials have confirmed a seventh case of meningococcal disease linked to the outbreak at the University of Oregon. 

A 52-year old father of a U of O student visited campus in early May. He then returned home, to another state, and became ill. Lane County Public Health's Jason Davis says samples from the patient were sent to Oregon Health Authority and found to be positive for meningococcal disease. He says the man has since been released from the hospital. Davis says the bacteria can last a long time.
"It can live up to two years in your throat without actually manifesting itself. So, the fact that we've seen this case, we were prepared for it. We certainly wish it wouldn’t have happened but we were prepared for it. "
Davis says the disease can be spread by sharing of a glass or toothbrush so practicing basic hygiene is crucial. Just over half of the students at the U of O have received the vaccination against meningococcal disease. The student health center and local pharmacies are still offering the vaccine. One U of O student died of the disease in February.


Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.
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