Two New York State universities are experiencing mumps outbreaks: The State University of New York (SUNY) at New Paltz and SUNY Geneseo, and student health at each school provided outbreak updates as follows:
In New Paltz, the outbreak has grown to 63 confirmed or probable mumps cases since October. Earlier this week, health officials recommended students receive a third, booster measles-mumps-rubella vaccine (MMR).
The SUNY New Paltz campus, the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) together with the Ulster County Health Department and SUNY New Paltz, will hold a vaccination clinic on Tuesday, December 13, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Wednesday, December 14, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Multipurpose Room of the Student Union.
The vaccines will be provided free of charge.
“There is increasing evidence that a third dose of the MMR vaccine will help raise immunity among the students who have not yet been exposed, and help prevent the further spread of mumps on the campus,” said NYS Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker. “We are also urging students to wash their hands regularly, avoid contact with people who may be sick, and immediately notify their healthcare provider if they suspect they are sick. Students who are ill should stay home from classes and social events.”
In the western part of New York, SUNY Geneseo’s Health and Counseling Center has received positive confirmation of 12 mumps cases of SUNY Geneseo students as of today.
All confirmed cases of the mumps at SUNY Geneseo affected students who had received the recommended two measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine doses. As seen in recent mumps outbreaks, a second vaccine dose does not guarantee immunity, as strength of the vaccine may wane over time. Also variant strains of the virus could be a factor.
At this time, SUNY Geneseo is not recommending a third dose of MMR vaccine.