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Prevention - Mumps

Protect your child against mumps. Make sure they get the MMR vaccine for mumps, measles and rubella.

The MMR vaccine is part of the HSE childhood immunisation schedule.

Get the MMR vaccine

Getting the MMR vaccine

The MMR vaccine is given in 2 doses:

  • first dose at age 1
  • second dose at age 4 to 5

The second dose is usually given at school by the HSE’s school immunisation teams. In some areas, your child’s GP will give it.

Two doses of MMR vaccine is around 88% effective against mumps.

You can get the MMR vaccine from age 1.

If you did not have both doses, you should get the vaccine as soon as possible.

If you're not sure your children had both doses, they can get the vaccine again. A third dose of MMR will not cause any harm.

It's important that students starting college are vaccinated.

Speak to your GP or go to the student health service in your college or university to arrange a vaccine - it is available free of charge.

It is also recommended that migrants and healthcare workers get the vaccine.

Speak to your GP if you think you may need to get the MMR vaccine.

Book an MMR vaccine appointment online to get vaccinated for free at a MMR vaccination clinic.

Vaccines for your child

Preventing the spread of mumps

Mumps is an infectious illness that spreads easily through infected droplets of saliva. It can be a serious illness for some people.

You are usually infectious from 2 days before swelling starts until 5 days after swelling starts.

If you have mumps, there are things you can do to help stop the virus from spreading.


  • stay at home until 5 days after your first symptoms

  • wash your hands regularly

  • always use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose when you cough and sneeze

  • throw used tissues in the bin immediately

Content supplied by the NHS and adapted for Ireland by the HSE

Page last reviewed: 14 April 2024
Next review due: 14 April 2027

This project has received funding from the Government of Ireland’s Sláintecare Integration Fund 2019 under Grant Agreement Number 123.