San Diego County Public Health Controller Warns of Whooping Cough Epidemic

The San Diego County Health and Human Services agency reported last week that the county has seen a whopping 900 cases of pertussis, also known as “whooping cough,” in the county this year. With the year only about halfway over the county is set to shatter its previous record of 1,179 in all of 2010. 

Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county’s public health officer warned residents and officials alike, saying in no uncertain terms, saying: “The county and the state are experiencing an epidemic of pertussis.” The outbreak of whooping cough is especially dangerous for infants, so Dr. Wooten is urging parents statewide to not only vaccinate their children, but for pregnant women to be vaccinated in order to protect their unborn babies from contracting the severe illness.

In all of 2014, the county has seen 895 confirmed cases of whooping cough. At the same time last year, the county only had 120 cases, and only 431 total in all of 2013. 

Across the state, the California Department of Public Health has reported 5,393 cases of pertussis, and sadly, one confirmed fatality—a five-week-old infant.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that children get vaccinated at the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 to 18 months, and 4 to 6 years. They also recommend preteens and adults get a booster shot.

Read more about the controller’s warning here.


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