Mustang News Staff Report
A university employee has been diagnosed with bacterial meningitis, according to an email sent Wednesday from Health and Counseling Services executive director David Harris.
County health department officials informed Cal Poly about the diagnosis on Tuesday afternoon, university spokesperson Matt Lazier said in an email.
The employee is receiving medical care, Lazier said, and there are no indications of any additional cases on campus at this time.
Cal Poly is working with the San Luis Obispo County Public Health Department to identify who the employee has been in contact with.
Bacterial meningitis is the more serious type of meningitis, and can result in prolonged hospitalization and can be transmitted through intimate contact with an infected person — kissing, sharing glasses, cups, silverware, etc. It has the same symptoms as viral meningitis — a less serious type of meningitis that people can typically recover from in two weeks.
People who have been in contact with a diagnosed person need to be screened and potentially given preventative antibiotics to avoid developing meningitis, the university email stated.
“To avoid contracting meningitis, it is recommended that individuals avoid sharing dishes, glasses, cigarettes or other items,” the email stated. “Wash hands frequently, and remember to cough in your sleeve, not into your hand.”
Symptoms include fever, stiff neck, headache, confusion and often a rash, according to the email. Someone can still have meningitis if only some symptoms are present.
If you or someone around you develops symptoms, the email recommends you seek immediate medical care at the closest hospital emergency department.
Jen Silva contributed to this report.