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Mumps outbreak update – cases expected to rise

Presented by:

Urgent Care Hawaii
By: Pani Shoja, MD
Medical Director – Urgent Care Hawaii

The Hawaii Department of Health (HDOH) is investigating the largest number of mumps cases seen in Hawaii since 2001. Recently, Hawaii State Epidemiologist, Sarah Y. Park, MD, FAAP, sent a Medical Advisory to healthcare providers to address the ongoing mumps outbreak. All Urgent Care Hawaii Centers follow established protocols to minimize the impact of mumps cases. Pani Shoja

As of May 16th, 2017, The HDOH confirmed nine (9) additional cases of mumps in Hawaii residents, bringing the total number of cases in 2017 to 39. Of the cases confirmed, eight (8) of the cases live on Oahu and one (1) case resides on Kauai. Thus far, no cases have required hospitalization.

Mumps are more contagious than the flu.

Mumps are extremely contagious and can be spread in a variety of ways from sharing food and eating utensils, to coughing and sneezing and to coming into contact with every day, inanimate objects or surfaces contaminated by germs from an infected person.

People with symptoms of mumps should contact a healthcare provider immediately.

Mumps is diagnosed by a combination of symptoms, physical signs and laboratory tests. The symptoms usually start 16–18 days after infection with the virus, but the onset can range from 12 to 25 days. Symptoms include: swollen salivary glands around the jaw (parotitis), fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, headaches and general muscle aches. Though most people recover completely, mumps may lead to complications including meningitis, deafness, encephalitis, orchitis, and oophoritis.

• Failure to vaccinate completely (two separate doses of the MMR vaccine)
• Age: The highest risk of contracting mumps is to a child 2-12 years old
• Travel to high-risk regions of the world which have a very low rate of immunization (Africa, India, Southeast Asia)
• Born before 1956 – If these individuals did not have the mumps infection in childhood, they are at risk for adult mumps disease

Immunization is the power to protect.

• The CDC recommends all children get two doses of MMR vaccine starting with the first dose at 12 through 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age.
• Students at post-high school educational institutions who do not have evidence of immunity (evidence that shows they were vaccinated as children or have had mumps) need two doses of MMR vaccine separated by at least 28 days.
• Adults should get at least one dose of MMR (unless they have had a blood test showing they are immune to mumps.)

Prevention tips:

• Recognize the symptoms
• Avoid close contact
• Wash hands often with soap and water
• Cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing – then wash hands
• Do not share cups and eating utensils
• Clean/disinfect surfaces frequently
• Seek medical help immediately

Note: Patients with mumps symptoms should be isolated and are restricted from school, work, travel, and public places for nine (9) days after parotitis onset, per Hawaii State Law.

MMR vaccines are available at all Urgent Care Hawaii Centers. Learn more at or call
808-456-CARE (2273).


Pani Shoja, MD
Urgent Care Hawaii
Medical Director

Urgent Care Hawaii
Waikiki – Kailua – Kapolei – Pearl City

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