Updated
March 13th, 2019

Texas Confirms 193 Mumps Cases

A total of 2,287 ICE detainees were quarantined around the country as of March 7, 2019

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According to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), there have been 193 confirmed mumps cases in Texas during the 2018-2019 time frame. 

This is an increase of 15 mumps cases from March 2, 2019, when Texas confirmed 178 cases. 

In an email update from Chris Van Deusen, Director of Media Relations for DSHS, these 193 mumps cases were reported by various Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) locations, facilities operated or contracted by the Marshals Service, and the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Refugee Resettlement in Texas. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), have reported 151 mumps cases in 30 states and the District of Columbia from January 1 to February 28, 2019. 

Previously, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment staff said that mumps is being brought to their ICE facility by detainees from Central America. 

"The vaccine that was given in Central America focused on just measles and rubella until the mid-’90s," says Rachel Herlihy, MPH, a communicable-disease epidemiologist.

This means those who received this vaccination before the mid-90s were not immunized against the mumps virus. 

As of March 7th, a total of 2,287 ICE detainees were quarantined around the country, ICE spokesman Brendan Raedy told Reuters on March 10, 2019.   

"ICE takes very seriously the health, safety, and welfare of those in our care. We are committed to ensuring the welfare of all those in the agency's custody, including providing access to necessary and appropriate medical care," Raedy said in a statement to CNN.   

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan told reporters on March 11, 2019, that changing demographics on the southwest border, with more immigrants from Central America traveling long distances, has raised health concerns. 

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ICE detainees come from countries all over the world, with varying degrees of vaccination coverage. 

“We are seeing migrants arrive with illnesses and medical conditions in unprecedented numbers,” McAleenan said at the press conference. 

Mumps is best known for the puffy cheeks and swollen jaw that it causes. This is a result of swollen salivary glands. 

Mumps can occasionally cause complications, especially in adults. Complications include inflammation of the testicles, inflammation of the brain, meningitis, and deafness, says the CDC. 

To get infected, a person generally has to be in close contact with an infected person.  

In response to the expanding number of mumps outbreaks in the USA, the CDC released guidance in October 2017, regarding when the 3rd dose of mumps vaccine is appropriate, such as a ‘confirmed outbreak’. 

The MMR vaccine prevents most, but not all, cases of mumps and complications caused by the disease. The mumps component of the MMR vaccine has reported being 88 percent effective when a person gets 2 vaccine doses. 

Vaccines, like any medicine, can have side effects, says the CDC. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of vaccines to the FDA or CDC.