Massapequa High School student stricken with bacterial meningitis

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A 16-year-old Massapequa High School student infected with bacterial meningitis remained hospitalized Saturday as county health officials worked to check family members and close contacts for the disease.

The Nassau County Health Department had arranged for the boy's family to receive antibiotics for the disease, department spokeswoman Carolyn McCummings said. Information on the condition of the boy, a student at Massapequa High's main campus, was not available.

The department was also investigating whether anyone had come into close contact with the boy's nasal or oral secretions, McCummings said. Students at the school are not at risk otherwise, she said.

School officials were notified Friday afternoon and sent a letter to parents the same day.

Robert Schilling, the Massapequa school district's executive director, said he didn't know the last time the boy attended school. No events or classes have been canceled, he said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that meningococcal disease - which can lead to the form of meningitis the boy contracted - infects "a couple of thousand" people every year, spokesman Tom Skinner said.

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