Panel: Use new meningitis vaccines only for outbreaks
ATLANTA (AP) — A federal panel is recommending that two new meningitis vaccines only be used during outbreaks and not be given routinely to teens and college students.
The two vaccines target B strain meningococcal (mehn-ihn-joh-KAHK'-ul) infections, which can lead to deadly meningitis or blood infections. Full vaccination costs more than $300.
Routine shots against other strains of bacterial meningitis are already recommended for that age group.
The B strain is rare but there have been outbreaks at colleges recently, including at least two this year at the University of Oregon and Providence College in Rhode Island.
Thursday's recommendation — if adopted by the government — would influence the use of the new vaccines by doctors and insurance coverage.
Vaccine panel: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/recs/acip/