SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- Six San Diego State University students have been diagnosed with mumps in the last week, according to the San Diego County Health and Human Services agency.
All six of the students live off campus at BLVD63, an apartment complex not affiliated with the university.
“These six mumps cases represent a small outbreak of this highly contagious viral disease,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. “The best way to prevent mumps is by getting the measles, mumps and rubella, or MMR vaccine.”
As a result of the outbreak, the agency will be conducting free vaccination clinics at the apartment complex from 3 to 6 p.m. on February 27 and 28 for BLVD63 residents and SDSU students wishing to be immunized.
Two doses of the vaccine are recommended for all SDSU students who haven’t already completed the series. A third dose is also being recommended for anyone who lives or works at BLVD63.
“Student Health Services (SHS) was able to quickly respond to this public health concern and worked to isolate these students, as well as provide initial information to our campus community,” said Libby Skiles, SDSU's SHS Director. “In collaboration with the county, our team is supporting the impacted students and working to proactively protect the overall health and wellbeing of our community.”
The cases come amid an uptick in local cases in recent months, health officials say. In 2019, San Diego County recorded 66 cases of mumps compared to just nine in 2018.
“Mumps is spread by coughing, sneezing or close contact with an infected person. Mumps can cause fever, headache, earache, and inflammation of the salivary glands which results in swelling and tenderness of the jaw,” County News Center said in a news release.
Anyone who thinks they have mumps should contact their medical provider before seeking care so precautions can be taken to prevent exposure to others.
HHSA will provide BLVD63 residents who wish to be immunized with free vaccinations at the residence on Thursday, Feb. 27 and Friday, 28.