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Migrants isolated after mumps exposure in Eloy

345 detainees at the La Palma Correctional Facility in Eloy were quarantined last week.

ELOY, Ariz. — Hundreds of detainees have been isolated at a single detention center in Eloy after an exposure to mumps.

Across the country, immigration detention centers quarantined more than 2,200 detainees who may have been exposed to mumps.

In Arizona, 345 detainees were isolated at the La Palma Correctional Facility after an exposure to mumps last week, March 7, according to Yasmeen Pitts O’Keefe, a public affairs officer for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

ICE said detainees are offered vaccinations “as indicated by medical professionals.” 

Exposed detainees are monitored daily. Detainees who were exposed to someone with confirmed, probable or suspected mumps are placed under restricted movement until 25 days have passed after the most recent exposure.

ICE said medics check people within 24 hours of arriving at detention centers, but according to Customs and Border Protection officials, large groups of families crossing the southern border are presenting new health challenges.

“We are seeing migrants arrive with illnesses and medical conditions in unprecedented numbers,” said Kevin McAleenan, CBP commissioner.

McAleenan issued a medical directive in January to expand medical resources for migrants across the border.

ICE said with the increase in the number of people being held at detention centers, it’s overwhelmed.

In a letter to the acting director of ICE, some Democrats in Congress question whether appropriate measures are being taken at detention centers. 

They say despite the expansion of ICE facilities, Congress has received no information about additional health staff or resources.