The Broome County Health Department is urging parents and guardians to make sure children are up to date on their meningococcal vaccine.

7th & 8th graders have to have their first shot and 12th graders need a second shot unless their first was at age 16 or older.

The Health Department says, while the vaccine has been recommended for more than ten years and required to get into school since September of last year, many Broome County Students still need to be vaccinated.

Miningococcal disease is sometime called the “kissing disease” and can be spread to large groups through sharing of a glass or cup, coughing or sneezing or kissing.

The disease can develop into a serious and life-threatening problem, causing loss of hearing, loss of arms or legs or even death.

Parents with vaccination question can contact the County Health Department Division of Clinic Services at (607) 778-2839.