Columbus Public Health officials issued a warning on Friday to anyone who came into contact with a man who died of bacterial meningitis.
According to health officials, Joe Christopher visited Columbus during Labor Day weekend and could have exposed others to the contagious infection.
Christopher, 29, publisher of CUE Magazine, visited several establishments in the Short North during his visit to central Ohio from the Pittsburgh area.
Bacterial meningitis can be spread by sharing drinks, food, cigarettes, by kissing and other intimate contact.
Symptoms of bacterial meningitis include sudden onset of fever, stiff neck, rash, vomiting, headache and fatigue.
Mysheika Williams Roberts with Columbus Public Health said that the illness can easily spread.
“We’re tasked with trying to find and identify individuals who had close contact with this person, so that they can be treated so they won’t get the infection themselves,” Williams Roberts said.
Williams Roberts said that her department has notified businesses in the Short North but said that Christopher’s death is no cause for others to panic.
“Individuals in the community who may have just been out partying in the Short North, but are not aware that they had close intimate contact with this individual, do not need to be concerned,” Williams Roberts said.
CPH officials asked anyone who believes they have symptoms to go to an emergency room.
Anyone who had close contact with Christopher but is not experiencing symptoms is asked to call 614-378-3454 to receive medication to prevent the illness.
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