Sackville High School student dies after meningitis diagnosis
A Nova Scotia teenager, who days ago was suddenly hospitalized with meningococcal meningitis, died on Monday morning.
The flag at Sackville High School was lowered to honour Rylee Sears, at Grade 10 student at the Halifax-area school.
He is being remembered as a happy, fun-loving teen who loved his friends, family and sports — one who defended his teammates in hockey and was active in volleyball.
Principal John Miller posted the message on the school’s website Monday.
“Our staff and students are deeply saddened by his death, and we wish to express our deepest sympathy and condolences to the family,” said Miller.
“Our school counsellors and school psychologist along with other qualified school board staff will be available to the students today and in the coming days as needed.”
Miller said there are support areas set up at the school and he acknowledged that some students may not be able to write a scheduled exam. He said parents should contact school administration to coordinate alternate times for writing exams they may miss.
Health officials have been in contact with about 130 people so far, as they work to trace who Rylee may have come in contact withat school and social events.
There have been no other confirmed cases of meningococcal meningitis, which causes the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord to become inflamed.
Capital Health says 50 people were given antibiotics as a precautionary measure.
Nova Scotia does have vaccine protection programs in place, however children in the province aren’t currently immunized against the strain Rylee had.
Still, health officials say the risk of contracting meningitis is very low.
“In order to be exposed you must come in contact with saliva of the person who was affected,” said Dr. Robin Taylor, medical officer of health for Capital Health.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Kelland Sundahl