Suffolk County Officials Report Whooping Cough Outbreak In Smithtown

SMITHTOWN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Officials on eastern Long Island are reporting an outbreak of whooping cough, also known as pertussis.

Thirteen students in three schools in Smithtown have been confirmed with the contagious bacterial infection.

Health officials in Suffolk County said Tuesday they had alerted area pediatricians and had given advice to school officials on how to control the outbreak.

Suffolk County Health Department Spokesperson Grace Kelly-McGovern spoke with WCBS 880 Tuesday and called pertussis “very contagious.”

“Most people will recover from the pertussis. It’s mostly a concern for infants who don’t have the immunization or full immunization,” she said.

Pertussis causes an uncontrollable, violent cough lasting several weeks or even months. It may begin with cold-like symptoms or a dry cough that progresses to episodes of severe coughing. It is spread from person to person.

Officials said all of the Smithtown students had been immunized, helping to reduce the severity of their illness.

“There is immunization that most children receive, which would probably mean…these children — from what I’ve learned — they are having milder symptoms than if they hadn’t been immunized,” Kelly-McGovern said.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments

One Comment

  1. MRS.RUTHANNE WITTERMAN says:

    WHEN REPORTING THEY SHOULD STATE THAT ALL THE INFECTED CHILDREN WERE VACCINATED!!!!! THE REPORTERS ARE NOT SAYING THAT AND , INDEED, MENTION THAT THERE ARE VACCINATIONS FOR THIS, IMPLYING THAT THESE CHILDREN WERE NOT VACCINATED. EVERY YEAR THERE ARE CHILDREN WHO COME DOWN WITH THIS DISEASE AND OTHERS AND RARELY DO THEY POINT OUT WHEN THE CHILDREN ARE VACCINATED!!!!! i would rather have a child with pertussis than suffer from autism.

    1. T.C. says:

      For the record, the myth of the link between autism and vaccines deals primarily with the Measles, Mumps, Rubella vaccine. The Tdap vaccine for pertussis, tetanus and diphtheria is not linked to the autism/vaccine myth. Also, this story, and every one that I’ve seen, HAS mentioned that they were vaccinated: ““There is immunization that most children receive, which would probably mean…these children — from what I’ve learned — they are having milder symptoms than if they hadn’t been immunized,” Kelly-McGovern said.”

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