The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) is alerting the medical community that an outbreak of invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) is continuing to occur among men who have sex with men (MSM) in New York City (NYC) and the surrounding boroughs. To date, 22 cases have been reported (1 in 2010, 4 in 2011, 13 in 2012 and 4 in 2013) with 7 fatalities.
There has not been any increase in Delaware cases of meningococcal disease, and no clusters or trends in terms of age or sex have been identified thus far. Delaware has on average 1-2 cases of IMD reported each year
Because of the proximity of NYC to Delaware, DPH recommends that providers discuss meningococcal vaccination with their MSM clients, especially those that may have had intimate contact with a man who was known to be from NYC, or could potentially be from NYC (meaning if the sexual partner’s place of residence or sexual history was unknown.)
In addition, routine screening for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), including syphilis, is encouraged for any of these men if they have not been tested in the past 6 months.
Meningococcal vaccines protect against N. meningitides serotypes A, C, W135, and Y. Meningococcal conjugate vaccine (Menactra by Sanofi Pasteur or Menveo by Novartis) should be used for individuals 55 years of age or younger. HIV-infected individuals should receive two vaccine doses, with the second dose administered eight weeks after the first dose (but no less than six weeks after the first dose). For individuals 56 years and older, one dose of meningococcal polysaccharide (Menomune by Sanofi Pasteur) vaccine is recommended.
Patients may receive the vaccine through their healthcare provider, certain pharmacies, or Federally Qualified Health centers (FQHCs).
Please call the DPH immunization program at 1-800-282-8672 for information regarding meningitis vaccine. Additional resources available at:
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