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Whooping Cough Epidemic Sees Outbreak on Children

January 10, 2013

As the state epidemic of whooping cough continues, now there’s an outbreak among school-age children in Winthrop.

Okanogan County Community Health Director Lauri Jones says there have been 12 confirmed cases since December. None of the children are seriously ill.

Jones and clinic nurses met Tuesday with Methow Valley School District officials. There are about 500 students at an elementary and junior-senior high complex in Winthrop.
Jones says about 15 percent of the Winthrop students are not immunized.

One of the students who was confirmed with pertussis on Jan. 3 attended a basketball tournament involving 17 schools on Dec. 28 and 29 at Brewster. Those schools have been advised to watch for an outbreak.

Jones says vaccinations are the best way to prevent the disease from spreading.

There were over 4700 cases of whooping cough statewide in 2012. As of this week, Grays Harbor and Pacific County have seen no change in the number of cases since Christmas.

Pertussis 1-5-13

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