The move came one day after a worker at the Shining Time DevelopmentCenter tested positive for meningococcal meningitis -- a rare, sometimesdeadly form of the affliction. The 18-year-old staffer is instable condition at Duke University Medical Center in Durham.
Health officials say that this case ofbacterial meningitis is very serious -- the worker had contact withfourteen babies who usually spend their days at Shining Time. Thosebabies got immediate preventative treatment. Each was given fourdoses of the antibiotic Rifadin.
Bacterial meningitis can be a seriousdisease for anyone -- but it can be especially dangerous for babies.That's why Shining Time director Faith Watson voluntarily closed the daycare center, spending Monday disinfecting the facility.
There are two types of meningitis. Viral meningitis is more common, andmuch more treatable. Bacterial meningitis, which includes meningococcal,is rare and can be more serious. Untreated, it can be deadly.
About five to ten percent of the general population carries themeningococcal bacteria in their nose and throat, but they never developthe disease.