Pertussis, or whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory illness that is caused by a type of bacteria called Bordetella pertussis. During the 20th century pertussis was one of the most common childhood diseases and a major cause of death among children in the United States. After the pertussis vaccine became available in the 1940ís the incidence of this disease decreased more than 80%.
Whooping Cough starts with a cough and a runny nose for one to two weeks. It is followed by weeks to months of rapid coughing fits that end with a whooping sound. Children and young infants, especially, appear very ill and distressed. Vomiting and exhaustion commonly follow the episode. Click here to listen to the sounds of a child with whooping cough.
Adults usually experience a milder course of the disease, but can transmit the disease to children who are too young to be fully vaccinated and also to those who are under-immunized or unimmunized, and adolescents who are old enough for their immunity levels to have waned. Young infants have the greatest risk for developing life-threatening pertussis-associated complications.
The good news is that there are vaccines available for young children, adolescents and adults.
California law requires all students entering 7th grade to be immunized with a pertussis (whooping cough) booster shot called Tdap.
If you are a Parent:
If you are a Health Care Provider:
Information for Schools:
Where to get a Tdap Booster Shot:
The best place to get a Tdap booster shot is from your health care provider. Some clinics and pharmacies also have Tdap available. Please call your health care provider, clinic, or pharmacy directly for more information.
The Butte County Public Health Department Clinic will be offering Tdap immunizations for a fee of $17 (while supplies last) on August 10th at 78 Table Mountain Blvd. in Oroville. Immunizations will be provided by appointment only, please call (530) 538-7553 to make an appointment.
Chico Unified School district will be providing Tdap vaccine for students in their district entering 7th grade. For more information please contact the Chico Unified School District at (530) 891-3000 ext. 138 or call the school your child will be attending.
The Feather River Health Center will be providing Tdap vaccine for students of the Paradise Unified School District. For more information please call (530) 872-2000.
For a complete website for parents, providers and schools devoted to the 7th grade Tdap law please visit www.shotsforschool.org.
Additional information is also available at the California Department of Public Health Immunization Branch website www.getimmunizedca.org.