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Hawai‘i Mumps Cases Increase to 39 in 2017

May 15, 2017, 5:04 PM HST (Updated May 16, 2017, 5:17 AM) · 4 Comments
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Pharmacies across the state are now offering MMR vaccines. Maui Now file photo.

The Hawai‘i State Department of Health today confirmed nine additional cases of mumps in Hawai‘i residents, bringing the total number of cases in 2017 to 39.

Of the cases confirmed today, eight of the cases live on O‘ahu and one case resides on Kaua‘i. Thus far, no cases have required hospitalization. This ongoing investigation represents the largest number of mumps cases seen in Hawai‘i since 2001.

The recently confirmed cases include children and adults at Central Middle School and the Job Corps Center in Waimanalo. The remaining cases are made up of individuals whose source of exposure is still under investigation.

DOH is working closely with both the Department of Education and Job Corps Center to contact and notify those individuals who may have come into contact with confirmed cases during their infectious periods.

At this point in the investigation, the confirmed adult resident from Kauaʻi cannot be linked to the clusters identified on Oʻahu. The case has no known travel history and investigation is ongoing to determine if this case is a new introduction or part of the larger Oʻahu outbreak.

“Mumps is a highly contagious disease and we expect to see more cases as this outbreak continues,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Park. “We have alerted healthcare providers and ask them for vigilance in controlling the disease and its spread with careful, early diagnosis. If people think they may have mumps, seek medical attention immediately as this illness is most contagious in the several days before and after the onset of parotitis, which is the swelling of the salivary glands in front of the ears.”

Mumps is a contagious disease caused by a virus. The classic mumps symptom of parotitis often results in a tender, swollen jaw. Other symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite. Some people with mumps have very mild or no symptoms.

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The MMR vaccine protects against measles, mumps, and rubella, and prevents most cases of mumps. Two doses of the vaccine are 88% effective at protecting against mumps and one dose is 78% effective. Being fully vaccinated is important in helping to protect the public’s health across the state, health officials advise.

MMR vaccine is available at local pharmacies across the state. To locate a vaccinating pharmacy in your community, visit check online or call the Aloha United Way information and referral line at 2-1-1.

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