At the height of flu season, we appreciate neighbors who warn us of outbreaks on the block. But Nadya McCann injected extra urgency into that task — and wielded a new tech tool — when her teenage son was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis in July 2011.
While Miles McCann received treatment for the contagious and potentially deadly illness in a hospital intensive-care unit, his mother used Nextdoor, a social-networking site for neighborhoods, to alert nearby parents in her town of Woodside, Calif.
She warned them that “if their son or daughter had spent time with Miles in the last week or so, they would need to contact public health officials to determine whether they needed to give their son or daughter prophylactic antibiotics to protect their kids and prevent the spread,” McCann says.
McCann says that as far as she knows, no other cases were reported. “It was a scary experience with a happy ending.”
Miles McCann recovered and turned 18 this past New Year’s Eve.