Pertussis

What's happening in 2014?
As of Nov. 26, the California Department of Public Health reported "widespread activity" of pertussis across the state with 9,935 cases this calendar year compared to 2,537 cases in 2013.  Similarly, in Alameda County case counts are up from 124 in 2013 to 328 cases as of Nov. 26.  The majority (89%) of statewide cases with known ages have occurred in infants and children 18 years of age or younger.  One death in an infant 5 weeks old has been reported with disease onset in 2014.

CDPH Pertussis Report – Nov. 26, 2014
CDPH Pertussis health alert May 16, 2014

2013
2013 saw pertussis case reports rising in California. Alameda County reported 121 cases with 0 deaths. California reported 2,470 cases, with 1 death in an infant of <4 months of age.

2012
In 2012 pertussis incidence was at a historic low. The State of California reported 1,023 cases for the year with 0 deaths. Alameda County reported a total of 62 probable or confirmed cases with 0 deaths.

2011 Outbreak
In 2011, Alameda County reported a total of 212 probable or confirmed cases with 0 deaths. Across California, 2,937 cases were reported to the California Department of Health in calendar year 2011. Disease activity in 2011 was at relatively increased levels throughout the state. However, by the end of 2011 the number of new cases reported had declined.

2010 Outbreak
The final pertussis case count in California for calendar year 2010 was 9,349 and 10 deaths (all infants). That total was the most pertussis cases reported in California in 63 years. Alameda County reported 403 cases of pertussis and 0 deaths in 2010, up from 33 cases total in 2009.

PertussisWhat is Pertussis?

Pertussis (whooping cough) disease is a very contagious disease of the lungs and respiratory system. It is caused by bacteria. Infants and young children are the most vulnerable, as well as pregnant women, infant caregivers and household members.

How is Pertussis Spread?

Pertussis or “whooping cough” is spread by tiny wet drops produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. People with whooping cough can spread the disease from the time they get a runny nose until 3 weeks after their cough starts. People with whooping cough can prevent spreading the disease if they take the right antibiotics.

Older children and adults, including parents, often have mild disease. They can spread whooping cough and not know it. This is because they do not feel very sick so they do not see a doctor or get treated. People with whooping cough should get treated with antibiotics. They should avoid close contact with others, especially babies and pregnant women, until they have taken 5 days of the right antibiotics.

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California Department of Public Health - Pertussis

Centers for Disease Control - Pertussis

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