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Increase in suspected mumps cases in North East - advice for schools and colleges from Public Health England North East

 

The number of suspected cases of mumps across the North East (and other areas of England) has increased since autumn 2019. Most cases have been reported in young people aged 15-24 years, especially those attending universities or colleges. Increases in reported cases of mumps are seen every few years, however we are aware that there have been media reports about this current increase so would like to provide advice to schools and colleges.

 

Advice for pupils or staff with mumps:

 

• Seek medical care in the usual way via NHS 111 or your GP – there is no specific treatment for mumps

 

• Stay away from work / school / university / college for five days from the onset of swelling to reduce transmission to others

 

•Wash your hands regularly using soap and don’t share used cups or drinking glasses without washing them

 

•Always use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose when you cough and sneeze, and throw the tissue in a bin immediately afterwards

 

•If you have not already had 2 doses of MMR vaccine, when you feel better, please contact your GP to arrange to be vaccinated to protect yourself against measles and rubella

 

For schools/colleges

 

•Please ask pupils and staff who report with suspected mumps to follow the advice above

 

•You do not need to contact the Public Health England Health Protection Team about mumps cases if you follow the advice above. If you have specific queries or concerns you can contact the Health Protection Team for advice

 

•There are no additional specific outbreak measures required within a school/college/university setting when a number of cases of mumps have been reported

 

•Children and young adults should have routinely received two doses of measles mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine - if they haven’t it is important to encourage MMR uptake to prevent these important infections.

 

•Pregnancy – pregnant women do not need to be excluded from schools/colleges when mumps cases are reported – most women will be immune but also if there are mumps cases at school there will also be mumps cases in the wider community that they will be exposed to

 

•Mumps can still occur in people who have had two doses of MMR but the symptoms are usually less severe

 

•Further information is available on NHS Choices.

 

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