Pertussis (also called Whooping Cough) continues to increase in King County and Washington State. As of May 10, a total of 237 cases have been reported for King County in 2012 compared to 98 cases for all of 2011. Statewide, about 1,280 cases have been reported compared to 110 cases in the same period last year. Washington State Department of Health officials believe the state could see as many as 3,000 cases by year's end.
This disease can be very serious for young babies, who often get whooping cough from adults and other family members. All teens and adults who haven't had Tdap (whooping cough booster) to be vaccinated to help protect babies that are too young for the vaccine.
Whooping cough vaccines are recommended for all children and adults. The shots children get wear off over time. Everyone age 11 and older should get a whooping cough booster, called Tdap. It is especially important for anyone who has close contact with babies younger than 12 months to get a dose of Tdap to help protect the baby from whooping cough. This includes parents, siblings, grandparents, health care providers, and child care providers.
For more information, go to the King County Public Health Web site.
Sources: King County, City of Lake Forest Park