Spokane Regional Health District reports 36 cases of mumps in Spokane County
Mumps update for media partners for Jan. 13, 2017
Spokane Regional Health District reports 36 cases of mumps in Spokane County, with several more under investigation, therefore, the number is expected to grow in coming days. Updated case count, as well as answers to frequently asked questions in the community, can be found on our FAQ here. If an individual is unable to find an answer to his or her question in our FAQ, they can call (509) 324-1550.
Spokane Regional Health District’s goal is to prevent the outbreak from spreading further and health district staff are grateful to numerous partners in the community who are helping to mitigate the spread of mumps.
A majority of Spokane County’s mumps cases are in school-aged children, which is impacting multiple school districts. If children are not fully immunized according to immunization requirements set forth by the Washington State Board of Health, Washington state rules and regulations authorize the exclusion of children from school, preschool, or child care during a mumps outbreak. In addition to the exclusion of students, WAC 246-110-020 authorizes Health Officers, during an outbreak, to exclude affected staff from working if they are not up to date with their immunizations or if they do not have other acceptable evidence of immunity.
The health district advises exclusion of non-immune individuals when multiple cases are identified within a school or building (regardless of whether they had a direct exposure to a specific classroom or individual). The duration of exclusion would be through the 26th day after the onset of parotitis (swelling of salivary glands in one or both cheeks that starts front of the ear and can spread down to the neck or jaw), in the last person with mumps in that school. Identification of another mumps case in the school after an exclusion period ends can result in a new exclusion period.
Currently, exclusion orders have been issued for several schools within Mead, Spokane Public Schools and East Valley School districts. Affected families and staff have been notified of these exclusions. As more cases are confirmed in Spokane County, it is highly likely that more exclusion orders will be issued.