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Whooping Cough Declared an Epidemic in California
- Updated: June 16, 2014
The California Department of Public Health has expressed its concern and officially declared whooping cough as an epidemic. With the rise in the number of cases of whooping cough in California, they had no other option.
Medically know as pertussis, there have been around 3,400 new cases reported in this year alone. This data was released by the California Department of Public Health, along with the fact that it has been on the rise for the last 3 – 5 years. The most recent and sudden rise in these cases was seen in 2010.
There have been around 350 new cases of whooping cough been reported in Los Angeles County this year alone. The worst hit among the areas was Long Beach. The city alone reported to have about 90 new infected people which was around 20 infections for every hundred thousand people.
Whooping cough is extremely infectious disease caused by a bacterial infection. It can spread by coughing and the symptoms are not very specific as they may vary from persons infected as per their ages.
If an adult is infected with the virus they may have trouble breathing with ease for weeks on end. If the same were to affect an infant, they could even die, that is if they are far too young to be vaccinated. The name is derived from the ominous way of coughing when one is affected by the disease, especially children. They suffer from violent bouts of coughing which come in the form of attacks.
On the contrary, infants may not even show any signs of the disease; though some cases have reported that the face turns red or in some cases even purple. Dr. Ron Chapman, director of the department said in a statement, “Preventing severe disease and death in infants is our highest priority. We urge all pregnant women to get vaccinated. We also urge parents to vaccinate infants as soon as possible.”