Meningitis at Princeton University spreads to 7th student

Princeton University continues to deal with an outbreak of a contagious and sometimes deadly infection.

State health officials have declared a meningitis outbreak on the campus and today confirmed the 7th case.

The seven confirmed cases date back to March. The latest diagnosis came today after a male student was treated first at the University’s McCosh Health Center and then moved to a local hospital early Sunday.

That student remains hospitalized, according to the university. He’s undergoing tests to determine if his case is related to the six other confirmed cases, which were all caused by the Type B meningococcal bacteria. All six people recovered.

New Jersey state law requires all Princeton students living in dorms to get a meningitis vaccine. That vaccine protects against most strains of the bacteria, but not Type B.

State health officials say they declared an outbreak in hopes of raising awareness on the Ivy League campus.

State officials say meningitis can be spread through kissing, coughing or lengthy contact. The symptoms include headache, fever, vomiting and rashes.

The school is encouraging students to take some simple health precautions to halt the spread of disease. They include tips like always coughing into a sleeve or tissue, frequent hand washing, using hand sanitizers and not sharing eating utensils. The recent outbreak even prompted university officials to urge students to not share their cups when playing games like flip cup and beer pong. They even distributed “Mine, Not Yours” red cups to promote not sharing germs.

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Wire reports contributed to this report. 

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