For more trusted health
news and information,
visit CBS Denver's
JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – This summer brought a whooping cough epidemic to Colorado and now there’s a push to get more adults vaccinated.
The official name is pertussis. It’s a wheezing cough that can leave a child gasping for air. It can also be deadly, especially for infants.
The epidemic has prompted Jefferson County’s health department to offer free shots for child care workers.
Jefferson County will have a clinic Wednesday from 8 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. at the Lakewood offices, 260 South Kipling Street.
Pertussis immunizations are recommended for all children and adults. Jefferson County’s health department asks everyone to check with their health care provider and be sure they are up-to-date on vaccinations.
Those seeking vaccine protection against pertussis should understand that Tdap is not the same as DtaP. They both protect against the same diseases (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis) but are given at different ages.
Tdap is the vaccination required when a child enters 6th grade and is now recommended for all adults, especially those who take care of or have close contact with infants. Only one dose of Tdap is currently recommended.
Dtap is the childhood vaccination given in a series beginning by 2 months of age and completing at 4-6 years of age.
The clinic on September 12 is for Tdap only.
On August 20 the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment report that from January 1 through August 11, a total of 715 cases of pertussis have been reported in Colorado, compared to a 2007-2011 average of 158 cases during the same calendar period.
In Jefferson County thus far in 2012, there have been 112 reported pertussis cases compared with 20 in 2009, 167 in 2010 and 104 in 2011.
Workers are asked to register for the special Tdap clinic by calling (303) 232-6301.