The CDC is expecting a rise in Pertussis (Whooping Cough) this year. Pertussis is a highly contagious respiratory disease that can be life-threatening, especially to newborns.
Symptoms include uncontrollable, violent coughing followed by the need to take deep breathes which result in a "whooping" sound. Cough can continue for weeks. Cough can also be accompanied by vomiting after coughing fits.
Infants and Children routinely receive immunizations against pertussis. But those immunizations are shown to wane over time. Therefore, we recommend adults get booster shots to increase immunity into adulthood.
It is important for parents, and those who come in contact with infants and children to be up-to-date on their vaccinations. The vaccine for Pertussis or Whooping Cough is known as Tdap, and also includes immunization against Tetanus and diphtheria.
Guidance has changed in the past couple of years, and the CDC reports it is now safe to allow pregnant women during the third trimester and adults over the age of 65 to get a Tdap vaccination if they have not been vaccinated with Tdap previously.
We encourage any adults who come in contact with newborns or infants to talk with their healthcare provider about Tdap, and vaccination against Pertussis. The easiest way to prevent Pertussis in through immunization.
You can get information or schedule an Adult Vaccination at your Local Health Department.