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Mumps clinic

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To protect against mumps in the night, the U of C is hosting a mumps clinic in Mac Hall Nov. 26-30 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Although long lines are expected, there will be 15 stations open at a time to keep students and staff moving, as well as hourly updated waiting times on the ucalgary.ca website.

There has been an outbreak in the Atlantic Canada--primarily in post-secondary students--since Jan. However, when the disease reached Chinook Health Region, which is Lethbridge and area, Alberta Health and Wellness decided to take steps to head off a possible outbreak, explained Calgary Health Region deputy medical officer of health Dr. Judy MacDonald.

"We've found that one dose doesn't provide long-lasting immunity [especially] when you have a group of students that live and work close together in confined spaces."

MacDonald noted the Calgary Health Region has had 41 cases of mumps reported for 2007, the majority of which since Oct.

"Post-secondary institutions are very vulnerable because there are a large group of people within a certain age bracket that are not immune to the disease," said U of C Health and Wellness Centre director Debbie Bruckner.

Bruckner noted it's important that students who are not immune get vaccinated.

"If you don't know you should get another vaccination, because having the disease as an adult is not very pleasant," said Bruckner. "If you're not sure if you've had two, it's not unsafe to get a third."

The virus is contracted through saliva droplets, can easily spread and can cause sterility, she explained.

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