Dec 10,2007 00:00
PORTLAND, Maine -- More than 300 Maine college students who failed to get a new mumps shot were barred from classes, dorms and dining halls and face police escorts off campus.
After two cases of the highly contagious virus were confirmed, the University of Southern Maine ordered its 5,996 full-time students to get a second immunization by Wednesday or be barred from campus, The New York Times reported.
For those who didn't show proof of immunization, the university deactivated student identification cards, which allow dormitory and dining hall access, and issued lists to professors, asking them to have unimmunized students escorted by university police from class.
The university supplied 800 immunizations in the past week. Twenty students who objected to immunization for personal or religious reasons were asked to stay away from campus during the virus's 18-day incubation period, the Times said.
Maine is experiencing its largest mumps outbreak in 25 years with 12 cases of an unidentified strain since September, the Times said. Last year, more than 1,000 cases were reported in eight Midwestern states. The now-rare viral illness created swollen glands, fever, sore throat and headache.
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