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Surge in Mumps Outbreaks Seen Across the US

DEC 13, 2016 | EINAV KEET
The United States is experiencing its biggest mumps outbreak in years, causing a surge of cases across the country after several years of relatively few cases. This has prompted health officials to take steps to prevent further spread of the disease.
 
BIGGEST OUTBREAK IN A DECADE
 
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the number of mumps cases reported this year so far in the United States is 4,258. By this time in 2015, only 1,141 cases of mumps had been reported across the country. The last time there was a bigger mumps outbreak was in 2006, when there were more than 6,500 reported cases.
 
MUMPS SPREADING IN UNIVERSITIES AND SCHOOLS
 
Colleges and schools have been hit hard by the current mumps outbreak. The mumps virus is a contagious disease spread easily through close contact; students who share classrooms, live in the same dormitory, and are part of sports teams can easily transmit the virus to one another.
 
MUMPS IN MIZZOU
 
An outbreak at the University of Missouri, first reported in early November, has now grown to at least 193 confirmed cases. School officials have noted that all students infected in the outbreak had received the recommended two doses of measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine prior to infection. In a message from the university’s Student Health Center, students are being urged to receive a third MMR booster shot to prevent infection.
 
BIGGEST OUTBREAK IN NEW YORK STATE SINCE 2010
 
Officials at the State University of New York’s (SUNY) New Paltz campus have reported 63 cases of the mumps since early October. In a recent press release, the university announced that it is working with New York State Department of Health and the Ulster County Department of Health to offer a free mumps vaccination clinic. Students who have received the recommended two doses of the MMR vaccine are being urged to receive a third dose to prevent further spread of the virus on campus.
 


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