University of Idaho Fraternity Being Treated for Meningitis
MOSCOW -- Officials at the University of Idaho say they were determined to act swiftly after a student was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis Wednesday.
The infection can spread among people who live in close quarters, and can lead to serious complications including hearing loss, brain damage and even death. The ill student, who was confirmed to have the infection late Wednesday morning, is a fraternity member of Delta Tau Delta who lived in the fraternity house along with about 60 other men.
University of Idaho Dean of Students Bruce Pitman said the university acted "immediately," calling a meeting with student leaders from that fraternity and providing antibiotics to every member. Early treatment with antibiotics can prevent infection, according to the public health district.
Anyone who may have shared saliva with an infected person through use of utensils, drinks, cigarettes or other means could be at risk. The disease is spread through droplets or direct contact with infected nose or throat secretions, but public health officials say the risk of infection to the general public is very low.