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Health News Florida

CDC touts vaccine for gay, bisexual men for Florida meningitis surge

The CDC reports that there have been at least 24 cases and seven deaths among gay and bisexual men caused by the bacteria in Florida recently.

Health officials recommended that men in Florida who have sex with other men get a meningococcal vaccine following one of the worst U.S. outbreaks of a bacteria that causes meningitis among gay and bisexual men.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement that there have been at least 24 cases and seven deaths among gay and bisexual men caused by the bacteria in Florida recently.

The CDC also recommended that gay and bisexual men traveling to Florida should ask their health care provider about getting the vaccine.

“Because of the outbreak in Florida, and the number of Pride events being held across the state in coming weeks, it’s important that gay and bisexual men who live in Florida get vaccinated, and those traveling to Florida talk to their health care provider about getting a MenACWY vaccine,” said José Romero, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.

Meningococcal disease is caused by a bacteria, and when the linings of the brain and spinal cord become infected it is called meningitis.

Symptoms include a sudden high fever; headache; stiff neck; nausea or vomiting; or a dark purple rash, according to health officials.

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