Island Health warns of whooping cough case at Central Middle School

Island Health warns of whooping cough case at Central Middle School

Island Health said parents should check that their children’s pertussis immunization is up-to-date. File photo.

Island Health is alerting parents to a case of pertussis, also known as whooping cough, at Central Middle School in Victoria.

Health officials said children at the contact may have come into contact bacterium that causes pertussis, which is spread by coughing.

Pertussis symptoms are initially mild and cold-like but may progress to a severe cough with a whoop. The cough may be followed by vomiting.

The disease is dangerous in young children, particularly those under the age of one.

Island Health said any parents or children who have a persistent cough or are coughing to the point of gagging or vomiting should contact their family doctor. The doctor can do a special throat swab to check for the pertussis germ. Antibiotic treatment is needed for pertussis. Children can usually return to school after five days of antibiotic treatment when the disease is no longer infectious.

Parents who are reporting their child’s absence from school are asked to indicate whether it is for medical reasons and are also asked to share what symptoms the child has.

Island Health said parents should also make sure are up to date for the pertussis immunization.

Alexa HuffmanAlexa Huffman

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