• MMR (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella)
  • Vaccine Recommendations

During a mumps outbreak should we offer a third dose of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine to people who have two prior documented doses of MMR?

In recent years, mumps outbreaks have occurred primarily in populations in institutional settings with close contact (such as residential colleges) or in close-knit social groups. The current routine recommendation for 2 doses of MMR vaccine appears to be sufficient for mumps control in the general population, but insufficient for preventing mumps outbreaks in prolonged, close-contact settings, even where coverage with 2 doses of MMR vaccine is high.

In January 2018, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) published guidance for MMR vaccination of persons at increased risk for acquiring mumps during an outbreak. Persons previously vaccinated with 2 doses of a mumps virus–containing vaccine who are identified by public health authorities as being part of a group at increased risk for acquiring mumps because of an outbreak should receive a third dose of a mumps virus–containing vaccine to improve protection against mumps disease and related complications. Either brand of MMR vaccine may be used. More information about this recommendation is available at www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/67/wr/pdfs/mm6701a7-H.pdf.

Last reviewed: June 19, 2023

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