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A District 300 Mumps Update

Dear Parent and Guardians,

We have just received notification from the Health Department regarding a second confirmed case of the mumps at Jacobs. In addition, we were also made aware of a possible third case pending test results early next week.

Upon review, we have found no connection between the first two students and the third student who is currently awaiting test results. Only two students (those with confirmed diagnosis of the mumps) shared a class. Outside of this one exception, these students do not have any other common classes or activities. In addition, please note that all three students were previously vaccinated.

At this time, the Health Department continues to support the isolation or exclusion of unvaccinated students to be limited to only those who shared classes with the students who have positive test results. These parents have already been contacted and their students will remain home through the remainder of the school year.

Due to laws pertaining to student information and privacy, I am unable to share any information with you as to the specific classes or teachers they have. However, we continue to work to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of our students and staff. We ask that you assist us by monitoring your child for any signs or symptoms that are included in the information below. We also encourage you to work with your physician to address any specific questions or concerns you may have regarding your child’s vaccinations or possible exposure to someone diagnosed with the mumps.

What is Mumps? Mumps is a viral infection that is characterized by swelling and tenderness of one or more of the salivary glands. This illness is uncommon in children who are up-to-date with the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) immunizations.

What are the Symptoms of Mumps? Symptoms of mumps infection include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite followed by onset of parotitis (swollen glands in the front of or below the ear or under the jaw). Mumps can lead to hearing loss or aseptic meningitis. Twenty – thirty percent of males who have reached puberty will experience painful swelling of the testicles and 30% of women who have reached puberty will experience painful swollen breasts and very rarely inflammation of the ovaries. Sterility following mumps infection rarely occurs. Symptoms usually resolve after 10 days. 

How is Mumps Spread? Mumps is spread from person to person following contact with infected respiratory secretions. A person with mumps is able to transmit the virus to others 3 days before the onset of symptoms and up 9 days afterward. The time between exposure to the mumps virus and development of symptoms (incubation period) is usually 16 – 18 days but cases can occur up to 12 - 25 days following exposure.

How is Mumps Treated? Since this is a viral illness there is no specific treatment, or medication to take. Provide ample opportunity for rest and drink plenty of fluids if fever is present. If you suspect you may have mumps seek medical attention and inform your doctor of your symptoms in advance to avoid possibly infecting others while sitting in the waiting room.

How is Mumps Prevented? Mumps vaccine, most commonly received in the MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella), is the best way to prevent infection with the mumps virus. The mumps vaccine is a live attenuated (weakened) vaccine. Two doses of MMR vaccine are routinely recommended for all children. The first dose is given on or after the first birthday and the second dose is given at 4-6 years of age. Most adults who have not been vaccinated or do not have documentation of previous infection with the mumps virus should receive at least one dose of MMR vaccine. One dose of mumps vaccine will be effective in preventing infection in 80% of people and two doses will be effective in 90% or people. Practicing good hand hygiene and avoiding sharing of articles that go into the mouth will also help to prevent transmission of mumps virus.

So, what happens if the Health Department do deem this an outbreak? The Health Department will inform us if they feel that we have reached an “outbreak” status. This threshold is generally reserved for any instance where three or more conformed cases have occur in the same facility within a two week period. If deemed an “outbreak” the District will then exclude any student and their sibling who are unvaccinated from their school for the remainder of the year.

Were these student vaccinated? Yes. In each of the confirmed cases the students were fully vaccinated. Vaccines are highly effective but do not guarantee immunity. According to the CDC "MMR vaccine prevents most, but not all, cases of mumps and complications caused by the disease. People who have received two doses of the MMR vaccine are about nine times less likely to get mumps than unvaccinated people who have the same exposure to mumps virus. However, some people who receive two doses of MMR can still get mumps, especially if they have prolonged, close contact with someone who has the disease. If a vaccinated person does get mumps, they will likely have less severe illness than an unvaccinated person"

What about family members who are pregnant or immunosuppressed? Should I be concerned? Given that every individuals needs and circumstances vary, anyone who has a concern should contact their physician. However, being immunosuppressed is not the same as immune deficient and the CDC does state that individuals vaccinated prior to being immunosuppressed are still okay. In fact, treating physicians will ensure that patents are vaccinated 2-4 weeks prior to a medical treatment that would result in immunosuppression as a precaution. Again, we encourage you to contact your physician to get their advice.

My doctor believes my child has the mumps and is testing them. What should I do? You should contact your school and Mrs. Sherrie Schmidt, D300 Heath Services Coordinator at 847-551-8371 or via email at sherrie.schmidt@d300.org. Please include the child’s name and last date of attendance. Mrs. Schmidt will then work with your child’s school , your physician, and the Health Department.

I do want reassure you that we continue to follow the Health Department’s guidelines for cleaning and sanitizing of classrooms, common spaces, and all “high touch” areas. As an additional precaution, this cleaning procedure was also been extended to all District 300 campuses and school busses.

We will continue to monitor this situation and will keep you apprised of any suspected cases or development. In the interim, please feel free to contact my office should you have any specific questions or concerns.

Sincerely,

Fred Heid

Superintendent 

District Office
Phone: 847-551-8300
Fax: 847-551-8413
Community Unit School District 300

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