Possible mumps case reported on campus

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URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) — Officials at the University of Illinois are cautioning students and instructors in the Chemistry Department after a possible case of mumps was reported on campus yesterday. 

UI spokesperson Chantelle Johnson said the reported illness had a “low probability” of being mumps. 

Officials with the Champaign-Urbana Public Health Department confirmed Friday that there are no confirmed cases of mumps in the area. 

Students and staff received an email from the UI’s McKinley Health Center on Thursday saying a person had been diagnosed with “possible Mumps.” 

“In situations such as this, the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District, area hospitals, and McKinley Health Center work closely together to ensure the safety of the campus and community,” Johnson said in a statement. 

The last time the UI reported a significant number of mumps cases on campus was in 2015, when 69 of 87 mumps cases reported to the Illinois Department of Public Health came from the Urbana-Champaign campus. 

UI officials are encouraging people to take preventative action against the viral illness — which is spread via saliva droplets or mucus from an infected person — by doing the following: 

•Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and throw the tissue away after use.

• Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze.  If water is not near, use an alcohol-based hand cleaner.

• Do not share eating and/or drinking utensils.

• Refrain from close contact with individuals who are sick/experiencing symptoms.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.  (Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.)

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