Santa Cruz County, CA health officials are reporting a spike in pertussis, or whooping cough since October and it is widespread throughout the county.

Image/David Benbennick
Image/David Benbennick

To put it perspective, since October 2018 many more people have been infected with whooping cough than in all of 2016 and 2017 combined.

Health officials are working with schools, families, and the community to stop the spread of whooping cough.

Tdap vaccine given during pregnancy reduces occurrence of infant pertussis: Study

Pertussis is a common, highly contagious bacterial disease. Most adolescents and adults recover without complications, but it can be deadly for infants. Within 3-5 days of antibiotic treatment, the disease is no longer transmissible to others.

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Vaccination is the best prevention against pertussis. A booster vaccine (Tdap) is available to teenagers and adults. This vaccine is recommended as neither the childhood vaccine nor the illness creates a lifelong immunity to the disease.

UntitledPertussis: Type of vaccine used to prime immune system permanently skews immune response