Small whooping cough outbreak in Cache Valley
May 31, 2023, 5:30 PM
CACHE VALLEY, Utah — An outbreak of whooping cough is taking place in the south end of Cache Valley, and Bear River Health Department, BRHD, is warning residents to take precautions.
BRHD Public Information Officer Estee Hunt said that several cases are confirmed in the area.
“Right now of course our biggest and number one protection is to get vaccinated,” she said. “In order to prevent the spread, practice good hygiene.”
Hunt further says that actions like covering your mouth when you sneeze with your sleeve or a tissue, then throwing it away, can help stop the spread of the infection. Also, make sure to wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
According to a release from BRHD the respiratory infection, also known as pertussis, is highly contagious and can easily spread from person to person. Therefore, it’s important to be aware of the symptoms, take action if infected, and stay home if you feel sick.
Symptoms of whooping cough and those most affected
Symptoms of the infection include persistent coughing that can lead to coughing fits or vomiting. It’s especially important to recognize early symptoms in younger individuals and those with pre-existing health conditions.
“Whooping cough can be particularly dangerous for infants and young children who have not completed their vaccination series,” said Dr. Prafulla Martin-Garg. “It is crucial for individuals experiencing persistent coughing or symptoms consistent with whooping cough to seek medical attention promptly.”
The release said early detection can help reduce the severity and duration of the infection and prevent further transmission. Furthermore, if you come in close contact with an individual carrying the illness, seek medical attention as soon as possible.
The BRHD has enhanced surveillance of the infection, contact tracing, and vaccine availability.
More information and resources are available on the BRHD webpage.