200-Plus Children Exposed To Meningitis At Day Camp


The parents of more than 200 children who may have been exposed to bacterial meningitis at a Michigan day camp have been advised to watch for signs and symptoms of the potentially deadly disease.

Kristy Malter, 21, an employee at Lifetime Fitness day camp, had been placed on life support after contracting bacterial meningitis. Malter worked at the camp between July 5 and July 11, and may have had direct contact with 213 children and 39 employees, according to the Detroit Free Press.

As of the morning of July 15, WJBK has announced that Malter passed away. 

The symptoms of bacterial meningitis include fever, severe headache, nausea and/or vomiting, confusion, weakness, and stiff neck or back, according to WJBK.

It is not as contagious as viruses causing the common cold or flu, as it can only be spread through oral or nasal secretions.

While treatable, it is important to diagnose and treat bacterial meningitis as soon as possible. If left untreated for too long, it can result in permanent brain damage, hearing loss, learning disabilities and, in the worst case, death. Symptoms can take up to 10 days to appear, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Kristy Malter, a junior at Central Michigan University, has been described by a former teacher as someone who loved working with children, the Detroit Free Press reports.

She was a cheerleader in high school, where she earned the nickname "Mama Kristy" for her willingness to help anyone who was in need.

This reputation is reflected in a post she made on Twitter in March.

"My goal in life is to help every person I meet realize how truly special they are," the post reads.

Sources: Detroit Free Press, WJBK / Photo credit: Beth Campbell via Detroit Free Press

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