Mumps outbreak in central Israel

Health Ministry vaccinates high school students in Modi'in after several of their peers fall ill with mumps.

Chana Roberts,

Mumps positive
Mumps positive
iStock

Israel's Health Ministry on Tuesday afternoon told parents of students in Modi'in's Maccabim Reut high school that at least one student had been diagnosed with mumps, and several other students were ill and showing symptoms of the disease.

Health Ministry representatives on Wednesday arrived at the school in order to vaccinate students in the grades exposed to the disease.

The Ministry recommended that students in Maccabim Reut receive an additional dose of the MMRV vaccine, and emphasized the importance of hand washing and not sharing cups or water bottles.

Modi'in Mayor Haim Bibas said, "We are in continuous contact with the Health Ministry and the district doctor, and we are acting as per their instructions. In addition, the school's educational staff is in contact with the families. Right now there are children who are receiving medical treatment, and some of the students who were infected are almost well again."

According to the CDC, "mumps is a contagious disease that is caused by a virus. It typically starts with a few days of fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite. Then most people will have swelling of their salivary glands. This is what causes the puffy cheeks and a tender, swollen jaw."

"Outbreaks have most commonly occurred among groups of people who have prolonged, close contact, such as sharing water bottles or cups, kissing, practicing sports together, or living in close quarters, with a person who has mumps."

Israel's Health Ministry noted that coughs, sneezes, and touching an infected person's nose and mouth mucus can also cause infection.

It also emphasized that "swelling may appear on one side only, or affect both sides over a period of a few days."

"Some vaccinated people may still get mumps if they are exposed to the virus. However, disease symptoms are milder in vaccinated people," CDC's site says.




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