Health

Only Three Tdap Clinics Left

Only three whooping cough vaccination clinics remain, the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) reported today.

After next week, parents of 7th through 12th graders who still need to show proof they have received the pertussis booster shot (Tdap) for school attendance will only be able to get the shot from their primary care physicians and a few other sources. Students not covered under a medical insurance plan can obtain the shot from a local retail pharmacy for a fee, or from a County public health center or booster clinic. 

“We’ve organized these vaccination clinics to help parents meet the new school requirement, but time is running out,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H, County Public Health Officer. “Parents who have not vaccinated their children must do it now to avoid impact on their academic progress.”

After four weeks with no group-site cases reported, this week there was one new case of pertussis at a public site where others may have been potentially exposed to the disease. The 5-year-old student was up-to-date with immunizations and attends San Luis Rey Elementary School in the Oceanside Unified School District.

Eleven cases of whooping cough reported this week brings the total in San Diego County to 367 in 2011. Last year, whooping cough cases in the region reached a record 1,144 cases, including two infant deaths.

The California Department of Public Health recommends a pertussis booster vaccine (Tdap) for everyone 10 years or older who has not yet received it, especially women of childbearing age, before, during, or immediately after pregnancy; and other people, including household contacts, caregivers, and healthcare workers, who have contact with pregnant women or infants. Children 7 to 9 years of age who did not receive all of their routine childhood shots are recommended to receive a Tdap booster dose.

A typical case of pertussis starts with a cough and runny nose for one to two weeks, followed by weeks to months of rapid coughing fits that sometimes end with a whooping sound. Fever, if present, is usually mild. The disease is treatable with antibiotics. For more information about whooping cough, please call the HHSA Immunization Branch at (866) 358-2966, or visit the web site at www.sdiz.org.

Whooping cough vaccination clinics:

1.  September 23, 2011
Noon-5:00 p.m.
(300 doses)
Fallbrook High School
2400 South Stagecoach Road, Fallbrook, CA 92028

2.September 27, 2011
2:30-6:00 p.m.
(300 doses)
Junipero Serra High School
5156 Santo Road, San Diego, CA 92124

3.  September 29, 2011
2:00-6:00 p.m.
(300 doses)
Patrick Henry High School
6702 Wandermere Drive, San Diego, CA 92120