City health officials are extending a vaccination campaign after another homeless person has died from a bacterial infection, reports The Boston Globe.
The first homeless person diagnosed with meningococcal disease, an infection that can get into the bloodstream or lining of the brain and spinal cord, died on Feb. 15. The latest death happened last week. The bacteria is spread through coughing, sneezing, kissing, and sharing utensils. People need to be within three to six feet of a sick person for several hours to contract it.
Since January, four homeless men and one woman have been diagnosed with the infection. The Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program has administered 2,400 shots to staff members and guests at homeless shelters across the city.
“It’s been a continued, aggressive campaign,’’ said Dr. Denise De Las Nueces, the medical director for the program.
The second victim was a woman who refused to get vaccinated, said Dr. Anita Barry, director of the Infectious Disease Bureau at the Boston Public Health Commission. However, most people have agreed to get the shot, she said. Barry plans to continue vaccinating people for at least four weeks after the last case occurs.
Read the full story in the Globe.