December 15, 2013 in Nation/World

In brief: California officials considering giving students unlicensed meningitis vaccine

From Wire Reports

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – State and federal officials are considering whether to provide students at the University of California, Santa Barbara, with an unlicensed vaccine to prevent further spread of a bacterial meningitis outbreak on campus, a newspaper reported Saturday.

Government health officials and the university are working together to determine whether the vaccine Bexsero would be effective against the type of meningitis that sickened four students in November, the Los Angeles Times reported Saturday.

The move comes after Princeton University received permission from the Food and Drug Administration to give Bexsero to students and others deemed to be at risk on its campus. Eight students at the New Jersey school fell ill after infection with a similar, but not identical, strain of the bacterium that sickened the California students.

In Santa Barbara, three of the afflicted students have recovered fully. The fourth had both feet amputated. No new cases have been diagnosed since Nov. 21, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement.

Man survives fall onto subway tracks

NEW YORK – A man in his 50s who fell onto the tracks on front of a New York City subway train survived when police say he dove into the deep roadbed between the rails as the train passed over him.

Police say Ralph Mercado was hospitalized in stable condition with only a bruised hand after Saturday’s incident at Union Station in Manhattan.

Witnesses saw Mercado screaming for help as the train rolled toward him. Suzannah Troy told the New York Post there wasn’t enough time for onlookers to act.

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