Seven mumps cases confirmed at Houston ICE detention facility


(Reuters) – Seven adult detainees at a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention facility in Houston have been diagnosed with mumps, but the contagious disease is contained, the city’s health department said on Saturday.

“Since these individuals were isolated inside the facility during the period they were infectious, we do not anticipate these cases posing a threat to the community,” Dr. David Persse, Houston’s local health authority and emergency medical services medical director, said in a statement. ICE’s Houston Contract Detention Facility houses approximately 950-1,000 adults.

The viral disease begins with fever, aches and loss of appetite, then causes painful swelling of the saliva glands. Symptoms typically last seven to 10 days.

Because mumps can spread quickly in crowded places, a Houston Health Department spokesman said detainees with mumps were put into isolation until they could no longer infect others.

Mumps can be prevented with the measles, mumps and rubella, (MMR) vaccine. Children who receive two scheduled doses of the vaccine are protected from the virus for life, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Reporting by Katharine Jackson; editing by Jonathan Oatis

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