NEW PALTZ, New York (WABC) --Nine cases of mumps reported at SUNY New Paltz have been connected to the university's swimming program.
The first two students were diagnosed October 7, followed by additional cases two weeks later. The outbreak prompted New Paltz to suspend all swim practices and meets out of an abundance of caution to see if there are any more confirmed cases among members of the swim program.
Mumps is a viral illness that causes swelling of the salivary glands resulting in a swollen face and cheeks, jaw pain and headaches. Students had been properly immunized in all the cases, but the vaccine is only 90 percent effective.
Mumps is spread through close contact, including the sharing of drinks and utensils, and kissing. The entire student population has been alerted, and seven non-vaccinated students were sent home. Administrators are hopeful there won't be any additional cases.
"All the athletes had to have a meeting with their coaches to be informed about all the cases of mumps that are going on," tennis player Pamela Fuks said. "To stay away and make sure they're being prevented, and what to look out for just in case."
The affected students were quarantined for five days, and the entire swim team will be allowed back in the pool on Friday.
Anyone with questions is asked to contact the school's Department of Athletics at (845) 257-3910.