Nine cases of mumps have now been confirmed in Columbia.
Andrea Waner with the Columbia/ Boone County Department of Public Health said the department is waiting on test results for three other suspected cases.
It has also identified four probable cases. This means that a patient exhibits symptoms of mumps, which include fever, swollen glands and weakness, but does not have a positive mumps test result.
Waner said as the time approaches for students to return to campus, people should take simple steps to protect themselves, such as practicing common sense hygiene and washing hands after coughing or sneezing.
“Get up to date on your MMR vaccine,” Waner said. “That is the best way that you can protect yourself and others is to be up to date on your vaccine.”
The Department is keeping an eye on close contacts of the confirmed cases. Waner said more cases are possible due to the nature of communicable diseases like mumps. She added that anyone exhibiting symptoms should stay home from work or school, and contact their medical provider.