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University of Missouri Offering Free Mumps Vaccines

Francis Quadrangle on the MU campus
Francis Quadrangle on the MU campus

Health officials from the University of Missouri will set up a mass immunization clinic next week as the school tries to stem the spread of mumps.

Over 320 confirmed and probable cases of the disease have been recorded amongst MU students since the beginning of the fall semester last year.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services and the Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services have combined to provide 2000 doses to the clinic free of charge.

Boone County Health Department community relations specialist Eric Stann says that the vaccines will help strengthen students’ immunity against the disease.

“As of December 2015 MU Student Health Center is recommending a third MMR vaccine for MU students only as a measure to help control the outbreak,” he said.

The vaccine is available to all students with a valid student ID, however MU spokesperson Christian Basi says not everyone needs to get the shot.

“If they have already contracted the mumps then they do not need to get the vaccine because by contracting the disease they should be protected from contracting the disease a second time,” he said.

Symptoms of mumps include fatigue, headaches, swollen glands behind the ear or under the jaw and pain opening and closing the jaw.