Mumps Out

Mumps Outbreak Controversy

Sayde Van Etten, Journalism Student

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Temple, the renowned education institution in Northern Philadelphia, is now home to an illness epidemic due to a widespread Mumps outbreak afflicting students and faculty members. The popular city school has reported at least 86 cases and or potential cases of the Mumps on its campus as of March 24th. The disease now plaguing the cherry and white grounds was widely eradicated in the 1970’s due to the development of the Mumps vaccination. However, Mumps are making the most out of their opportunity for a comeback due to the anti- vaccination movement that has struck the country.  In recent years, speculation and certain studies have lead more and more people to question the validity of vaccinations; the question the nation has on its mind being whether they are beneficial or even safe among weak/young immune systems, as well as any correlation to autism. To answer this, Pennridge students share their views.

According to Pennridge High School Senior Victoria Paterson, the Anti-Vaccination movement is right in its existence, and should continue its work; arguing that, “the vaccination in itself is a small dose of the disease, if your system is compromised in anyway this small ‘preventative’ dose could severely impact such a sensitive system.” In cases such as the Mumps, where it can be spread through any salivary gland or general bodily fluid, the concern for widespread exposure is astronomical and at the fingertips of any person with an autoimmune disease. “Why risk the damage?” Paterson stated.

However, Pro-Vaccination individuals still stand their ground. Jessica Rogers, another bright senior from Pennridge High School, is a strong believer that everyone should be vaccinated. Rogers holds her stance in trying times claiming, “I feel strongly about vaccinations because they are proven to be effective. They have gotten rid of many deadly diseases and are essential to human survival. There is no scientific evidence to prove that they are harmful, all evidence proves that they are helpful.” The vaccinations for the current Mumps epidemic have proven to be 88% effective this year, but the lack of their administration has been accredited with its substantial spreading.

Two Clinics have been set up in the Philadelphia area to help combat the outbreak. However, their effectiveness is still under scrutiny as the two different movements move father to their alternative. Where do you stand?