17-year-old Danish boy succumbs to rare disease

Entire student body at boy’s school to be vaccinated

A 17-year-old student at Birkerød Gymnasium died of meningococcal disease around the start of the year.

Another 17-year-old appeared to contract the rare disease, which can attack the lining around the brain, but appears to have now recovered.

Rather safe than sorry
The entire student body and staff at Birkerød Gymnasium is scheduled to be vaccinated over the coming week.

Relatives of the staff and students were not deemed to be at risk, so they have not been scheduled for treatment.

“It is important to emphasise that the disease is not very contagious and preventative care is only needed if you have slept with or kissed someone who is ill with meningococcal disease within ten days of the onset of the disease,” said Anette Lykke Petri, a doctor at Styrelsen for Patientsikkerhed, the agency for patient safety.

READ MORE: Refugees carrying dangerous diseases into Denmark

Meningococcal disease is caused by the bacteria meningococcus. The disease is rare and not considered particularly contagious. There were just 40 reported cases in Denmark in 2015.