More clinics for mumps vaccinations have been added to Whistler and now include Squamish and Pemberton after 13 confirmed cases have been reported in both Whistler and Vancouver, with another four suspected cases reported.
Coastal Health (VCH) media spokesperson Tiffany Akins said additional clinics have been set up in the Sea to Sky corridor, with Whistler Public Health, located on the second floor at 4380 Lorimer Rd., open for vaccinations Tuesday, May 17 through Friday, May 20 from 1 to 4 p.m.
Squamish public-health drop clinic at 1140 Hunter Place is open for vaccinations from Tuesday, May 17, through Friday May 20 from 1 to 4 p.m. The Pemberton public health clinic at 1403 Portage Rd., is also open for vaccinations from Tuesday, May 17 through Friday May 20 from 3 to 4 p.m.
Babies from six months old to one year should be vaccinated if they've had direct contact with someone with mumps, said Akins.
Mumps is a contagious viral infection and two doses of vaccine are urged for those born after Jan. 1, 1970, and one dose recommended for those born before 1957.
A vaccine is also available from your pharmacist or family doctor.
Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) said if you’re not sure if you have complete protection, it’s safe for you to receive another dose of MMR vaccine.
“Mumps vaccine is usually given as MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella). Because a second dose of MMR was not added to routine vaccination schedule in B.C. until 1996, many adults born between 1970 and 1996 are not fully protected. If you are not sure if you have complete protection, it is safe for you to receive another dose of MMR vaccine,” VCH said in a press release.
Mumps can cause fever and swelling of the salivary glands in the face. The glands are located below the jaw and ears and under the tongue. If you suspect you have mumps, notify your doctor before a visit in order to protect staff from contracting the virus. It is also recommended that you stay home from work to avoid infecting others.
VCH also states not everyone infected with mumps will have salivary gland swelling. Complications can occur as a result of mumps infections, including swelling of the testes in adult males and swelling of the ovaries in adult females, although sterility is a rare outcome. Rare complications include inflammation of the brain (meningitis) and temporary but often permanent deafness.
For information go to www.immunizebc.ca or call HealthLink BC at 811.