A steady stream of about 8,000 Colorado State University students and employees filtered into the Mac Gym at the Student Recreation Center on Friday to receive free meningococcal bacteria vaccinations at one of the largest vaccination clinics in Colorado history.
The CSU Health Network broke its goal of administering 6,000 vaccinations.
The clinic was a collaborative effort between the university, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment and the Health District of Northern Larimer County to provide campus with the shots to prevent deadly meningococcal diseases such as sepsis and meningitis.
â€œItâ€™s a preventable thing that happens and people can die from it,â€ said Paula Miller, a junior civil engineering major.
The National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention declared an outbreak of meningococcal disease in Larimer County due to seven cases in the last five months, five of which have ended in death.
â€œWeâ€™ve been very happy that thereâ€™s the interest in being vaccinated,â€ said Dr. Adrienne Lebailly, director of the Larimer County Health Department.
More than 330 volunteers from 25 organizations in 22 counties administered the shots, according to CSU spokesman Brad Bohlander. They gave out about 888 shots per minute, collectively, to those who registered.
â€œMeningitis is a serious illness, and weâ€™ve got it pretty controlled in the U.S.,â€ said volunteer and Colorado Department of Health and Environment employee Curt Drennen.
Drennen went through 75 vaccinations within the first hour and a half, and saw every spectrum of needle phobia. One patient fainted minutes after being given a shot due to nerves, while two other students held each otherâ€™s hands as the needles entered their bodies.
â€œWe all have our fears, and a shot is an invasive process,â€ Drennen said.
Students who missed out on Fridayâ€™s clinic can go to the Rec Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday.
According to a press release on the upcoming clinic, the free vaccination will be available to anyone between 2 and 29 years old who is:
- A CSU student,
- A CSU employee, or
- Lives with a CSU student or employee, specifically family members and roommates.
_Crime Beat Reporter Rachel Childs can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. _