More than two thousand illegal immigrants are quarantined by ICE for exhibiting symptoms of diseases, like the mumps.
According to CNN, US Customs and Border Protection and US Immigration and Customs Enforcement are dealing with ill immigrants more seriously than ever before.
The number of immigrant detainees and asylum seekers held along the border areas such as El Paso, Texas, has been increasing since last year.
“As of March 7, 2019, there was a total of 2,287 detainees cohorted for exposure to a detainee with a contagious condition,” a spokesman for ICE said in a statement.
“In the past 12 months, there have been health investigations at 51 ICE detention facilities for mumps, chickenpox and influenza, according to [ICE officials],” CNN reports.
“There have been 236 reported cases of mumps, with another 16 suspected cases during this time period.”
While in CBP custody, three children had died since November due to life-threatening infections and illnesses which they contracted on their journey to the US from their homes in Guatemala or Honduras.
The border patrol tried to provide emergency care to two of the kids but their illnesses had unfortunately advanced too far.
During the last several years, most of the asylum seekers and illegal immigrants have been diagnosed with chicken pox or influenza – diseases that are still common in the US.
However, CBP and ICE have seen a hike in immigrants containing communicable and severely life-threatening diseases such as the mumps.
Texas border patrol facilities have seen the most serious outbreaks. For instance, more than 200 people, aged 13 to 66, have been quarantined for the mumps in a single border patrol facility in Texas.
The situation is deeply problematic not only for the US citizens but also for the immigrants as well as the border patrol agents.
US border patrol is already working in strained conditions owing to lack of staff and other facilities, the New York Times reported.
The influx of immigrants with serious diseases has further worsened the immigration crisis at the southern border of the US.
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