- Associated Press - Friday, May 5, 2017

HONOLULU (AP) - The Hawaii Department of Health has confirmed four more people have mumps in the state, which brings this year’s total to 20 people.

In addition, one more person has been confirmed to have rat lungworm, which brings the disease total to 14 people.

The state said there are at least two separate clusters of mumps cases. Health care providers have been notified about the disease because it’s easily spread, said Dr. Sarah Park, the state epidemiologist.

“We expect additional cases to be reported in the coming weeks,” Park said. “There is no specific treatment for mumps infection, and while most people will recover completely, mumps can occasionally cause complications, especially in adults.”

The disease is not considered life threatening, but there are some lasting side effects, including the swelling of salivary glands and swollen jaws.

Health department officials said a vaccine is nearly 90 percent effective against the disease with two doses. Over 90 percent of Hawaii children have been vaccinated for the disease and that vaccination rates have been stable, department spokeswoman Janice Okubo said.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had said in December the country was in the midst of its worst mumps outbreak in a decade. More than 100 cases of the virus had been reported in six states.

As for rat lungworm, the new case is one of the adults who drank kava and had been previously reported as a highly probable case in April.

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