Pertussis, (also known as whooping cough) is a highly contagious bacterial disease that can be spread by coughing. It is predicted that in 2019-2020, we will see a rise in pertussis.
Pertussis begins with a cough and runny nose lasting for 1-2 weeks, followed by weeks of “coughing fits”. Most people with pertussis do not have a fever. Anyone with these symptoms should see their health care provider.
Anyone can get pertussis. However, young children and the elderly are at the greatest risk of complications. The best way to protect yourself against pertussis is to be vaccinated.
The childhood vaccine against pertussis is called “DTaP” and the pertussis booster vaccine for adolescents and adults is called “Tdap”. Both vaccines also protect against tetanus and diphtheria.
- It is recommended that children get 5 doses of DTaP vaccine at 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15-18 months, and 4-6 years.
- For adolescents, a booster dose of Tdap is recommended at 11-12 years of age.
- Adults are recommended to receive a Tdap every 10 years.
- Pregnant women are recommended to get a Tdap booster during each pregnancy, no matter when they received their last dose. When a mother gets the booster during the 27-36 weeks of pregnancy, the baby is protected until they are old enough to get their first dose of DTaP.
The best place to get vaccinated is at your primary health care provider or clinic. To find vaccine locations in Lake County use https://vaccinefinder.org or contact Lake County Health Services Department, Public Health Division at (707) 263-1090.