By Stacy Kess
Wednesday reports released from the Ohio Department of Health and Columbus Public health show two outbreaks in Ohio continued to spread this week.
Identified cases of mumps reached 377, according to numbers reconciled from ODH and CPH reports. Six counties are now reporting a total of 129 confirmed measles cases, six of which have resulted in hospitalization.
The Delaware General Health District reported 38 cases of mumps to ODH. The majority of mumps cases continue to be reported from Franklin County — 312 according to CPH reports — with 189 cases being linked to the outbreak at The Ohio State University that began in January.
CPH also reported 1 cases of mumps in Indiana.
DGHD has been working with one unconfirmed case of measles since the outbreak began in Knox County in late March among a group of individual who had not received the vaccine due to religious objections. The group had recently made a trip to the Philippines where measles are an active disease.
ODH warned that although the school year is almost over, close contact between children is still a concern, and urged parents to immunize their children before attending summer camps.
“Activities that bring large groups of people together can accelerate the spread of these diseases,” said ODH State Epidemiologist Dr. Mary DiOrio. “When coming into close contact with sick individuals, immunizations can provide the protection you need to keep from getting ill.”
The measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR) is available through primary care doctors and health departments and is generally given to children between 5 and 12 months of age, with a second dose administered between 4 and 6 years of age prior to entering school. The CDC also encourages those attending post-secondary schools to get an MMR booster due to students living in close quarters.
When administered per the recommended schedule, MMR is considered 97 to 99 percent effective in preventing measles and 88 to 90 percent effective in preventing mumps. MMR also protects against rubella, also known as German measles.
ODH said it is also important to know the signs and symptoms of both mumps and measles, since both are still actively spreading in Ohio.
Symptoms for measles include fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes, sore throat and a red rash appearing three to five days after the start of the symptoms. Symptoms of mumps include runny nose, cough and swelling of the salivary glands.
Reporter Stacy Kess can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @StacyMKess.