Meningitis is a RARE disease, 3 people statewide a YEAR contract the illness. The vaccine itself does not cover all prevalent meningococcal strains, including those primarily found on college campuses and it is a very costly vaccine. The disease rate has been going down across all ages and the vaccination rates for high school students has voluntarily been increasing.
The Senate Health and Welfare Committee will hear about this rule change tomorrow at 3 p.m.
E-mail: the Health and Welfare Committee Members / alternative link
Subject line: 16.02.15 Immunization Requirement Opposed
Here's the key points.
- Meningitis is a rare disease, an average 3 in Idaho contract bacterial Meningococcal meningitis each year. Around 300 people in the US get ill from the bacteria less than 50 die.
- The rare disease has been on a downward trend with historic lows in 2016.
- The meningococcal vaccine is intended to protect against only 4 strains of bacteria are proven ineffective. These vaccines are effective in providing immunity to those strains of meningitis in only 85 percent of people who receive them.
- This vaccine DOES NOT COVER the B strain most commonly found on college campuses. CDC reports findings that 93% of the college students contracting the disease were vaccinated!
- Meningitis vaccine rates are actually INCREASING without the additional mandates.
- The CDC has approved three vaccines targeting the A, C, Y and W135 strains of meningitis: Menactra, Menveo which still contains significant mercury concentrations in multi-dose vials.
A rare disease that has an annual death rate in the U.S. of approximately 1 in 1,000,000; literally “one in a million.” 
Neisseria meningitidis, the meningococcal bacteria, is passed by coughing or contact with saliva and is normally present in the respiratory tracts of healthy people without causing disease [3, 4, 5]. In fact, probably no one escapes infection. Symptomatic disease is quite rare for N. meningitidis. As such, 100% of the population, vaccinated or not, are asymptomatic carriers at some point in their lives. In fact, at any time, 5-35% of the population is silently carrying the bacteria, though the numbers often rise to nearly 100% in close quarters, such as military barracks and college campuses .
Is meningitis scary? Yes. But, with only 4 strains of bacterial meningitis and 0 strains of viral meningitis in the vaccine, it's a guessing game, similar to the flu shot, on which strain you'd even be exposed to. The vaccine, in creating an artificial immune response, actually leaves you more vulnerable to the more virulent strains of meningitis, not covered in the vaccine.
Idaho infectious disease reports show the following for Neisseria meningitidis, often referred to as meningococcus. Which causes cause meningitis and other forms of meningococcal disease such as meningococcemia, a life-threatening sepsis.
2017: 2 cases
2016: 3 cases
2015: 0 cases
2014: 5 cases
2013: 4 cases
According to the CDC's Enhanced Meningococcal Disease Surveillance Report, 2016 the rare disease has been on a downward trend since the late 1990's. 372 people in 2016 got the disease nationwide. (Incident rate of .12 of 100,000).
DOCKET NO. 16-0215-1802 (pg 91) The Health Department wants to "require a second dose of meningococcal (MenACWY) vaccination before a student enters the 12th grade in Idaho, starting with school year 2020-2021. If a student received their first dose of meningococcal (MenACWY) vaccine at 16 years of age or older, they will not be required to receive the second dose before entry into the 12th grade."
How can you, as a parent, best protect your child from meningococcal infection?
Answer: Remind your child that this disease is spread by prolonged contact. Sharing toothbrushes, cups and kissing are forms of transmission.
Improve your child’s immune system by providing a healthy diet of whole foods that are rich in nutrients. Give supplements that are high in antioxidants, balanced B-vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids. Give extra vitamin D3 during cold and flu season. Heal the gut if your child has gastrointestinal problems. Stress the importance of getting enough sleep and fresh air. Help your child learn to relax. And, just say NO to vaccines that damage your child’s innate immune system.
Read about this shots function, efficacy and reactions here:
New Proposed Rule:
Idaho Infectious Disease Reporting:
Disease Trends in Idaho: