UPDATED 11:12 AM PT — Wednesday, March 20, 2019
Health officials in Philadelphia said 13 additional people have contracted the mumps at Temple University, sending the count from the outbreak to a new high. The total number of cases now stands at 67.
The outbreak prompted Temple University to change its immunization policy for incoming students. The new policy requires them to receive two doses of the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine before entering school.
Some students expressed their frustration with the spread of the infection on campus.
“I feel like its crazy, because this could have been avoided by simply having a vaccine,” said Temple University student Ashley Alex. “And these are preventable diseases, and I think I saw someone with the mumps walking around.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the vaccine significantly decreases the risk of contracting the virus.
Since the vaccine’s effectiveness can diminish over time, however, a booster shot may be necessary to keep up the body’s defenses against the virus. Health officials said this may be why the number of cases at the university is rising.