[SaneVax: Israel instituted an MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccination program in 1988. The country is now facing multiple outbreaks of mumps. Did the vaccine fail to work? Did vaccination simply delay risk of getting mumps until those vaccinated were older? Did the virus mutate, making the vaccine useless? For those who are contracting mumps at a more advanced age, the risks involved are much more substantial than had they had the disease as children. The SaneVax Team believes this is not what vaccination programs are designed to accomplish.]
Ministry: Israel in midst of mumps outbreak
By Dan Even
Israel is in the midst of a mumps outbreak, the Health Ministry announced this week.
Since the beginning of September, 105 people have been diagnosed with mumps, most between the ages of 10 and 24.
During that period in 2008, only four people were diagnosed with the disease, a contagious virus characterized by swollen salivary glands. Only 13 cases were reported for the entire year. In 2007, only six mumps cases were reported.
Eighty-two of the current cases are people from Jerusalem, but the disease has also been found in the central region (11 cases), Tel Aviv (5), the south (4) and Haifa (2).
One of the patients developed testicular infection, a complication of mumps, and is hospitalized in a Jerusalem hospital.
Itamar Grotto, director of Public Health Services in the Health Ministry, believes the increase in the number of cases stems from the fact that the mumps innoculation was added to the national vaccination program only in 1988, along with measles and rubella.