Houston, Texas: Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) told reporters on Thursday that there are 27 confirmed cases of mumps in detention facilities across Texas.
As we reported this week, there are 13 cases in the Houston area. The Houston Contract Detention Facility has eight confirmed cases and the Joe Corley Detention Facility, located in Conroe, has five cases.
Seven cases of mumps among Houston ICE detainees were first reported on Saturday. The Houston Health Department said in a statement that the seven adults were detained during their infectious period, and that there was no evidence the disease was transmitted outside the facility.
The remaining 14 cases of mumps are in the San Antonio Area of Responsibility (AOR), as ICE refers to the geographical sections within the state. The largest cluster of cases is at the South Texas ICE Processing Center, in Pearsall, where ten people are infected.
ICE also confirmed two cases at the Rio Grande Detention Center, in the Laredo area; one case at the Laredo Processing Center; and one case at the Port Isabel Detention Center in Bayview, Texas.
Another 17 ICE detainees at the Johnson County Jail in Cleburne are under medical segregation after prior exposure to an active mumps case. Officials said those individuals will be returned to the general population in detention once the incubation period has passed and they test negative for the virus.
Though most people recover within weeks from mumps, it is highly contagious and spreads through coughing and sneezing.
Symptoms of mumps include fever, body aches, loss of appetite and swelling of the parotid glands. In rare cases, it can lead to more severe complications that require hospitalization.
The mumps vaccine is a routine part of childhood shots in the United States, though not all countries have as high vaccination rates.
Mumps is a vaccine-preventable contagious disease caused by a virus. It typically starts with a few days of fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite, followed by swollen salivary glands.
Those experiencing symptoms of mumps or any highly contagious disease should immediately contact their doctor. Most people recover from mumps without serious complications.
Mumps can be prevented with two doses of measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine. Children should receive the first dose at 12 to 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age. Two doses of the vaccine are 97 percent effective.
CDC considers people who received two doses of MMR vaccine as children according to the U.S. vaccination schedule protected for life.
“Properly vaccinating your children isn’t just about protecting your child, it’s about protecting your entire family and your community,” Dr. Persse continued.
While rare, mumps outbreaks have previously occurred in the state and Houston region.