Calvert County Health Department

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Pertussis, or whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis.

Pertussis is spread from person-to-person by airborne droplets and close contact with infected respiratory secretions.

Pertussis can be prevented with a pertussis vaccine. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends that anyone with the care of a newborn infant be immunized with Tdap vaccine prior to caring for the infant. Tdap vaccine is available at the Calvert County Health Department during Adult Immunization Clinic on Monday afternoons from 1:00-3:30 pm. For more information contact Community Health at 410-535-5400 ext.334.

The signs and symptoms to watch for include:

  • Low Fever
  • Runny nose
  • Cough that is mild at first, then severe with times of deep, rapid coughing and crowing or high pitched "whoop". The cough may worsen at night.
  • Vomiting after coughing

Currently, the U.S is having a resurgence of pertussis due to waning immunity in the older population. For more information on the disease see the two links below and if you feel that you have signs and symptoms consistent with pertussis, please contact your physician.

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