Col­lege mumps out­break has widened

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - LOCAL NEWS - By Wil­liam J. Kem­ble news@free­manon­line.com More info on mumps: www.cdc.gov/mumps

SUNY New Paltz now says there have been 21 con­firmed cases of mumps on cam­pus and that the col­lege also is track­ing an un­spec­i­fied num­ber of un­con­firmed cases, in­clud­ing one in a New Paltz High School stu­dent.

The col­lege said on its web­site that the high schooler had been in close con­tact with a SUNY stu­dent.

The high schooler also has been in close con­tact with a New Paltz Mid­dle School stu­dent and a Duzine El­e­men­tary School stu­dent, the col­lege said, so New Paltz school district of­fi­cials “have no­ti­fied stu­dents, staff and par­ents ... that they may be at risk of ex­po­sure to mumps.”

School district Su­per­in­ten­dent Maria Rice said Tues­day that the district has been tak­ing pre­cau­tions rec­om­mended by the Ul­ster County Health Depart­ment since the high school stu­dent’s probable case was re­ported Nov. 15.

Rice also said she is in con­tact with the nurses in the district’s schools ev­ery day.

Mumps is a res­pi­ra­tory virus, the symp­toms of which in­clude painful swelling of the sali­vary glands near the ears and un­der the jaw, which can oc­cur on one or both sides of the face. Other symp­toms can in­clude fever, headache, mus­cle aches, fa­tigue and de­creased ap­petite.

Mumps is trans­mit­ted through close con­tact, shar­ing of uten­sils, drink­ing glasses and saliva con­tact through kiss­ing.

The mumps prob­lem at SUNY New Paltz be­gan late last month with eight cases, and be­cause it af­fected mem­bers of the in­ter­col­le­giate swim team, the cam­pus pool was shut down for two days and swim meets for the re­main­der of the se­mes­ter were can­celed. Also, 20 stu­dents who had not been im­mu­nized were sent home un­til Dec. 17.

Rice said there have been no changes in the high school ath­letic sched­ule or pro­ce­dures.

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