Skip all navigation Skip to page navigation

DHHS Home | A-Z Site Map | Divisions | About Us | Contacts |

NC Department of Health and Human Services
Women's and Children's Health Home
N.C. Public Health Home
North Carolina Immunization Branch

Vaccine Preventable Diseases


The Disease

Mumps is a contagious disease that is caused by the mumps virus.  Mumps is spread by droplets of saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose, or throat of an infected person, usually when the person coughs, sneezes or talks. Items used by an infected person, such as cups or soft drink cans, can also be contaminated with the virus, which may spread to others if those items are shared. In addition, the virus may spread when someone with mumps touches items or surfaces without washing their hands and someone else then touches the same surface and rubs their mouth or nose.

The Vaccine

Mumps vaccine is typically administered through the combination MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine or by the MMRV (measles, mumps, rubella and varicella) vaccine.

Who Should get Vaccinated?

Children should receive two doses of mumps vaccine.  The first should be given soon after their first birthday (12 to 15 months of age). The second dose is recommended before the start of kindergarten.

North Carolina Requirements

Two doses. One dose on or after 12 months of age and before age 16 months, and a second dose before entering school, college or university for the first time.

A physician's diagnosis is not acceptable for mumps disease(s). Individuals must be immunized or have laboratory confirmation of disease or have been documented by serological testing to have a protective antibody against mumps. Individuals born before 1957 are not required to receive the mumps vaccine.  Individuals that entered the first grade for the first time before July 1, 1987 or college or university before July 1, 1994 are not required to receive the vaccine. Individuals that entered school, college, or university before July 1, 2008 are not required to receive the second dose of mumps vaccine.

Additional Resources



Updated: September 11, 2019