2016-09-14 / Front Page

Urge Whooping Cough Shots For Infant Caretakers

By Liz Goff
A recent, dramatic increase in whooping cough cases in Queens and other parts of New York City has officials urging infant and toddler caretakers to get a whooping cough vaccination.

There have been no fatalities in the recent outbreak but whooping cough, a violent, chronic spasm also known as Pertussis, can be extremely dangerous to infants and toddlers, city officials said.

City health officials said almost all of the infants age six months and under that had the highly contagious disease between August and November 2015 had to be hospitalized.

Whooping cough usually begins as a generic respiratory illness that progresses to a severe cough, a website for the city Department of Health (DOH) states.

Cough spasms can be so severe that they cause vomiting in young patients, often accompanied by a sharp “whooping” sound when the child breathes, the website states.

City officials are urging parents and child caretakers to contact their physician for information and availability of the whooping cough vaccination.

The information is also available on the DOH website at: www.health@nyc.org, or by contacting any city hospital, officials said.

Anyone who cannot afford the vaccination is urged to contact the nearest city health center or hospital to arrange for the vaccination.

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