Meningococcal Disease in Florida, 2022

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Meningococcal disease outbreak among men who have sex with men

In response to an ongoing outbreak of serogroup C meningococcal disease in Florida, CDC is encouraging gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men to:

  • Get a MenACWY vaccine if they live in Florida1
  • Talk with their healthcare provider about getting a MenACWY vaccine if they are traveling to Florida

In addition, CDC is highlighting that MenACWY vaccination is routinely recommended for all people with HIV in the United States.2

Meningococcal disease cluster among college and university students

In response to a cluster of serogroup B meningococcal disease cases in Florida, officials are recommending the following groups of college and university students in Leon County, FL, consider getting a MenB vaccine series3:

  • College and university undergraduate students
  • Students living in on-campus housing
  • Those who participate in a fraternity or sorority

Find a meningococcal vaccine by contacting your

Meningococcal disease: Very serious, often deadly

The two most common types of meningococcal infections are meningitis (an infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord) and bloodstream infection, both of which can quickly become deadly. Three serogroups of meningococcal bacteria cause most meningococcal disease in the United States: B, C, and Y.

Seek medical care right away if you have symptoms

Symptoms of meningococcal disease can first appear as a flu-like illness and rapidly worsen.

Serogroup C outbreak among men who have sex with men

There is a large, ongoing outbreak of serogroup C meningococcal disease in Florida, primarily among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men, including those living with HIV. Recent data show that about half of the cases associated with this outbreak are among Hispanic men. This outbreak is mostly affecting people who live in Florida but has also affected some people who have traveled to Florida.

MenACWY vaccination offers the best protection

In response to the serogroup C outbreak in Florida, CDC is encouraging gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (with or without HIV) to:

  • Get a MenACWY vaccine if they live in Florida
  • Talk with their healthcare provider about getting a MenACWY vaccine if they are traveling to Florida

Ideally, people would get vaccinated with one dose (or the 2-dose series for people with HIV) at least 2 weeks before traveling. Learn more about what gay and bisexual men need to know about meningococcal disease outbreaks.

CDC is also emphasizing the importance of routine MenACWY vaccination for people with HIV. For the best protection, people with HIV should make sure they have gotten their 2-dose primary series of a MenACWY vaccine and are up to date with booster doses. Learn more about what people living with HIV need to know about meningococcal disease.

Serogroup B cluster among college and university students

Leon County, FL, also reports an unrelated serogroup B meningococcal disease cluster among college and university students. This cluster has only been reported to affect people living in Florida.

Serogroup B vaccination offers the best protection

In response to the serogroup B cluster in Florida, officials are recommending the following groups of college and university students in Leon County, FL, consider getting a MenB vaccine series:

  • College and university undergraduate students
  • Students living in on-campus housing
  • Those who participate in a fraternity or sorority

Learn more about what people need to know about serogroup B meningococcal disease.

Finding and paying for meningococcal vaccination

If you are recommended meningococcal vaccination during an outbreak, it should be covered by your insurance provider. If you do not have insurance, a local health department should be able to provide your vaccination free of charge.

Find a meningococcal vaccine by contacting your doctor’s office, pharmacy, community health center, or your local health department.

Footnotes

  1. CDC routinely recommends MenACWY vaccine for children and adults at increased risk for meningococcal disease during an outbreak involving serogroups A, C, W, or Y. CDC also recommends a booster shot for those at increased risk due to an outbreak who received the vaccine more than 5 years ago.
  2. CDC routinely recommends MenACWY vaccine for children and adults at increased risk for meningococcal disease, including those with HIV. People with HIV should get a 2-dose primary series of MenACWY vaccine, with the second dose given at least 8 weeks after the first, followed by a booster dose every 5 years. If someone completed their primary series before the age of 7 years, they should get their first booster dose 3 years later and then get a booster dose every 5 years.
  3. CDC routinely recommends MenB vaccine for people 10 years or older who are at increased risk for meningococcal disease during an outbreak involving serogroup B. CDC also recommends a booster shot for those at increased risk due to an outbreak who received the vaccine more than 1 year ago.
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2022