Arkansas Health Dept. Holds Second Mumps Vaccine Clinic Thursday
SPRINGDALE (KFSM) — As suspected and confirmed cases of the mumps continue to grow, the Arkansas Department of Health is holding a second mass MMR vaccine clinic Thursday (Oct. 13) in Springdale.
The Mumps, Measles, Rubella (MMR) vaccine will be available at the Jones Center from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The flu vaccine will also be offered. Patients with insurance should bring their insurance cards, but the vaccine will also be provided at no cost to those who do not bring a card.
The mumps outbreak in Northwest Arkansas was first reported at the end of August and has since grown to more than 500 suspected and confirmed cases. It includes students at Springdale, Rogers and Bentonville schools.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), mumps is a viral illness that is transmitted by direct contact with respiratory droplets or saliva from an infected person. It is best known for painful, swollen salivary glands that show up as puffy cheeks and swollen jaw. Boys may also have painful, swollen testicles. Other symptoms include fever, headache, muscles aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite. There is no treatment, and symptoms usually resolve themselves within a few weeks.
Mumps is usually a mild disease in children, but adults may experience more complications. Complications can include deafness and encephalitis, which is inflammation of the brain.
Two doses of MMR vaccine are 88 percent effective in preventing mumps, according to the health department.
The current CDC recommendations for MMR vaccination are as follows:
- For children younger than 6 years of age, one dose of MMR vaccine at age 12-15 months, followed by a second dose of MMR vaccine at age 4-6 years.
- For children age 7 through 18 years not previously vaccinated, one dose of MMR vaccine or MMRV (Mumps, Measles, Rubella, and Varicella) vaccine, followed by a second dose of either MMR vaccine or MMRV vaccine at least 4 weeks after the first dose.
- In outbreak situations, a third dose of the MMR vaccine may be safely recommended in certain settings where transmission has occurred, such as schools.
- For adults born in 1957 or later and not previously vaccinated, one dose of MMR vaccine.
- A second dose of MMR vaccine is recommended for adults born in 1957 or later, who are students in a post-secondary educational institution, work in a health care facility, or plan to travel internationally. The second dose should be administered a minimum of 28 days after the first dose.
MMR vaccines are also available at the health department in each county, and may also be available at a doctor’s office or a local pharmacy.
For daily updates on the mumps outbreak in Northwest Arkansas, click here.