Quincy University has confirmed a case of mumps on campus. The dean of students has released a detailed letter to the campus community encouraging students and staff to be aware of symptoms and take action to prevent the spread of mumps.
The letter is reprinted here:
Dear Campus Community,
The probable case of mumps on our campus has been confirmed as a positive case. The student has recovered and will be returning to campus this week.
We are working closely with the Adams County Health Department and local health care professionals to be as proactive as possible in keeping our campus healthy. If an individual is vaccinated against mumps, his or her risk of getting mumps is very low. It is important, however, to be aware of the signs and symptoms of mumps because you can still get mumps regardless of your age or vaccination status.
Mumps is a virus that is easily passed from person to person by saliva, sneezing, coughing, sharing drinks, etc. Symptoms of mumps include:
Swollen glands (starting behind the ear and moving towards cheek or jaw area)
AND any of the following
Nausea & vomiting
Should you be experiencing these symptoms, please do the following:
· Contact the Wellness Center at 217-228-5432, ext 3790. We ask that you not visit the Wellness Center in person if you believe you may have mumps to prevent further spread of the virus. The hours of operation are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. Outside of those hours please contact Christine Tracy at 217-228-5432, ext. 3353 to explore alternative medical arrangements. Only a trained medical professional can diagnose mumps.
· Isolate yourself in your residence hall room or, if you live off campus, refrain from coming to campus and other public places. Mumps is a highly contagious virus therefore is it essential that you limit your contact with others.
· For assistance in sending official notification to your professors for any missed classes due to mumps diagnosis by our Wellness Center staff or other medical professional, contact Christine Tracy.
· Residential students who have a mumps diagnosis will be contacted by our Residence Life staff to provide support, make alternative living arrangements (if necessary), and arrange for meal delivery.
Since mumps is spread by droplets of saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose, or throat of an infected person, you may prevent contracting mumps with a few simple actions:
• Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and throw the tissue away immediately after use.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. If water is not near, use an alcohol-based hand cleaner.
• Do not share eating and/or drinking utensils.
• Refrain from close contact with individuals who are sick/experiencing symptoms.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. (Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.)
Faculty, staff, and students should be up to date on their vaccinations. Students: If you are unsure if you have received the mumps (MMR) vaccinations, please contact Christine Tracy to verify your status. Faculty and staff are encouraged to contact their health care provider regarding their vaccinations. The best way to ensure protection against this virus is to complete the vaccination series.
Students and staff who are not appropriately immunized or who do not have laboratory evidence of immunity will be excluded from work or classes from the 12th through the 25th day after their last exposure. Per the CDC and the Adams County Health Department those days of exclusion are Saturday, February 4th through Friday, February 17th. When multiple cases occur, susceptible individuals need to be excluded through 25 days after the onset of the last case at the school or workplace.
For general questions, please contact Dean of Students, Christine Tracy, at 217-228-5432, ext 3353. If you have symptoms of the mumps, please contact the Wellness Center at 217-228-5432, ext. 3790.
Here is more information about mumps: