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Meningitis cases identified at Arlington schools

ARLINGTON — Two cases of meningitis have been identified at Arlington schools, officials said Wednesday, Feb. 17.

One Arlington High School student and one Stillaguamish Valley School student have contracted the bacterial disease, which is spread through direct contact of nasal or throat secretions.

Arlington School District and Snohomish Health District officials said they were confident that exposed individuals were identified and provided with medication, said Misti Gilman, school district spokeswoman. That medication includes antibiotics.

"At this time, it is believed that Snohomish Health District has identified all close contacts of the ill person(s) and preventative treatment has been provided," wrote Amy Blanchard, program manager of the health district's communicable disease program, in a letter to parents dated Feb. 16.

As a precaution, parents of students at both schools were notified, Gilman said. A fact sheet about meningitis is also available to parents in English and Spanish on the school's Web site, which is www.asd.wednet.edu.

Students at both schools could have been exposed to meningitis on Feb. 5, 8, 9, 10 or 12.

Names of the students who were identified as having meningitis were not released.

For more information about the investigation, call the health district at 425-339-5278.

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