The Student Government Association senate will be voting on a resolution today that supports a requirement for meningococcal meningitis vaccinations for incoming freshmen.
Louisville freshman and SGA senator Loandria Dahmer drafted Resolution 6-15-F to support meningococcal meningitis vaccinations for incoming freshmen. Dahmer said other universities she applied to require a meningococcal meningitis shot for incoming freshmen living on campus.
“Other schools like [University of Kentucky] or [University of Louisville] require a meningococcal meningitis vaccine before you can live in the resident halls,” Dahmer said.
Dahmer thought WKU also had the same policies but later found out they fell short in that aspect.
Dahmer said vaccinations should be required for incoming freshmen living on campus.
Dahmer said she hopes President Gary Ransdell will be helpful in playing an important role for this resolution.
“I haven’t spoken to any of the upper level administration about it, but I spoke to several professors in the nursing program and they seem to be in support of it. I hope that President Ransdell is in support as well,” said Dahmer.
Meningitis is a disease that affects the lining of the brain and spinal cord. The disease can be transferred through saliva and living in closed areas, according to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention.
The signs and symptoms of meningococcal disease are typically onset of fever, headache and stiff neck. The symptoms can being with those similar to influenza.
“83 percent of adolescence cases in the US can be prevented by a single vaccine,” Dahmer said.
The symptoms are very similar to flu-like symptoms as well.
“The symptoms look a lot like flu symptoms when you initially contract the disease. It moves a lot faster and progress more quickly than the flu does, and it has more serious side effects overall,” Dahmer said.
Most clinics offer meningitis vaccinations, so students can go either off campus to a local primary care office or to the on-campus health clinic.
“It’s a very important vaccine and it is offered by the Graves Gilbert Clinic,” Dahmer said.