The Student Health Centre would strongly advise all students who have not received Meningitis C Vaccine to seek their regular GP's advice regarding vaccination prior to commencing their University studies. While the risk of contracting either meningitis or mumps is usually low, there is a risk when young people congregate in large numbers.
Signs and Symptoms
Meningitis and septicemia are not always easy to recognise at first. In the early stages signs and symptoms can be similar to many other common illnesses, for example flu.
Early symptoms can include:
- Headaches, Photophobia, Neck stiffness ,Vomiting and General tiredness,
- High temperature, fever,
- Nausea (feeling sick), vomiting, sometimes diarrhoea
- Joint or muscle pains,
- Dislike of bright lights,
- The person may be confused or disorientated
- Both adults and children may have a rash
All INTERNATIONAL students are strongly recommended to have the Meningitis C vaccine before arriving in Ireland.
Further information is available from:
Meningitis Research Foundation have launched an iPhone App (FREE to download...) and there is also a FREETEXT version for all other phones as well by SMS TEXT. The details of both services are on the www.meningitis.org website.
These details are:
Symptoms of Meningitis and Septicaemia
iPhone App for FREE-App Store-Meningitis Bug Blaster
SMS TEXT the word TIME to 50308 (FREETEXT service) for all other makes of phone
A Recent HSE Report noted 194 cases of mumps todate in 2017. Most cases are in young adults under the age of 35.
Third level colleges have large numbers of susceptible individuals facilitating ongoing transmission of mumps infection.
The Student Health Centre would strongly advise all students who have not received 2 doses of MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella vaccine) to seek their regular GP's advice regarding vaccination prior to commencing their University studies. While the risk of contracting mumps is usually low, there is a risk when young people congregate in large numbers.
Mumps FAQ’S (frequently asked questions)
What is mumps?
Mumps is an acute viral illness that causes fever, headaches and painful swollen salivary glands.
How is it spread?
It is spread from person to person by coughs and sneezes. It can also be transmitted through direct contact with saliva, including kissing.
How serious is it?
You could be ill enough to miss two weeks from college, studying or sitting exams.
What are the complications?
Generally complications are mild but mumps can cause meningitis, deafness, inflammation of the pancreas, ovaries or testicles.
How can I be protected?
Immunisation with MMR vaccine is the best protection. Two doses of MMR are recommended to offer you full protection.
Who needs to get the MMR?
If you are under 25years and have only had one dose of MMR you need to have a second one.
If you were never vaccinated with MMR you need two doses. Older students usually don’t need MMR vaccine as they probably were infected with mumps as young children before the vaccine was available.
How many doses of MMR have you ever received?
If you do not know how many doses of MMR vaccine you have received (check your immunisation record with a parent/GP/HSE community care office?)
If you still are unsure you should go ahead and get at least one dose of MMR.
Where do you get the MMR vaccine?
Get in touch with your GP to find out about your free MMR vaccination or contact the student health centre.
Further information is available from:
If you have not had chickenpox before it is quite likely that you will catch it. It takes 8 to 21 days for symptoms to develop after exposure. People with chickenpox can be infectious for up to 3 days before the rash appears.
What is Chickenpox?
Chickenpox is a highly infectious but usually mild common childhood illness. A high temperature and cold symptoms are often the first signs of illness, followed by the appearance of the typical rash. The rash starts as small pink bumps, around the neck, ears, back and stomach. The bumps will develop a little water blister, which will turn yellow and oozy and then crusty as it dries. The rash spreads across the whole body including the lower arms and legs. Some people will only have a few spots others could be covered with them. The infected person can spread infection for up to 3 days before the rash appears and until the last pox is crusted and dry. Anyone who has had Chickenpox will not get it again.
Should I be concerned about Chickenpox?
Chickenpox is usually a mild illness for most children although complications can sometimes develop. Chickenpox can be much more serious for anyone with a weakened immune system and for adults. Adults are more likely to develop complications from Chickenpox. Chickenpox infection in women who are in the early stages of pregnancy can result in congenital abnormalities in the infant. If you are concerned please download the Chickenpox in Pregnancy guide
What should I do if I think I have Chickenpox?
If you are normally healthy, Chickenpox will probably be a mild illness and no specific precautions are necessary.If you or anyone in your family has a weakened immune system (for example from cancer or an organ transplant) contact your doctor immediately.If your child develops Chickenpox they should not attend a crèche or child care until all the spots have crusted over. Children with spots that are crusted and dried can safely attend as they are no longer infectious.Your doctor and local health clinic will be able to answer any further questions that you might have or phone 045 907820 or the Dept of Public Health at 01 6201776.
Download further information
Students with asthma are strongly advised to avail of the influenza vaccination as detailed above. Asthma is a chronic lung condition. However, with proper management, students with asthma should be symptom free most of the time. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you are advised to make an appointment with the doctor for assessment and further management of your asthma.
Daytime symptoms more than twice per week
Limitation of exercise
Waking at night due to symptoms
Using your reliever medication more that twice a week
For further information click http://www.asthma.ie
Colds and Flu
The Student Health Centre recommends that students with relevant underlying medical conditions go to their own GP, the off-campus University Doctor, Dr Denis Gaffney, or any pharmacy for the flu vaccination.
If you have a Medical Card or European Health Insurance Card, the vaccination and administration of same is free, otherwise there is a fee to administer injection.
For information on colds and flu, please click here.
Important Notice for Diabetics
Are you aware that blindness is a complication of both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes? Screening for diabetic retinopathy (a condition that affects the small blood vessels in the lining at the back of the eye) is now available free of charge. Further information is available from the Student Health Centre and at Diabetic Retina Screen
We are keen to actively introduce students to healthy lifestyle choices. We take the opportunity to discuss issues such as healthy eating, exercising, smoking cessation and alcohol consumption during consultations when appropriate. Information relevant to student health is displayed in the waiting room and students are encouraged to take these leaflets home with them.