Whooping cough cases rise in South Dakota; parents urged to immunize kids
South Dakota Department of Health says whooping cough cases are on the rise, and its urging children to be immunized.
In South Dakota, cases of whooping cough are up 87 percent over the fire-year median—58 cases were reported as of October 3. According to the Department of Health, most of the cases are in school-age children and result from an outbreak in school settings.
48 state and Washington, D.C. have reported increases in whooping cough through September. Minnesota has reported nearly 4,000 cases, the most since 1943, and Iowa has reported more than 1,100 cases this year.
The South Dakota Department of Health provides free whooping cough vaccine for children. Shots are recommended for children 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15-18 months and 4-6 years of age. Children need the complete series to be fully protected.
The Department of Health recommends a booster dose at 11-12 years as immunity begins to fade away. Immunizing at older age groups also helps decrease the likelihood of outbreak because whooping cough is high contagious and spreads easily in the school setting.