GENESEO – Another case of pertussis, or ‘whooping cough,’ has been confirmed at Geneseo Central School, and school administration and the Livingston County Department of Health are partnering to keep students and parents as well informed and well prepared as possible to combat the bacterial disease.
On Tuesday, Geneseo Superintendent Tim Hayes sent a message to parents in the district advising them that another case of pertussis has been confirmed and the Department of Health’s reccomended preventative actions still stand.
“We have had confirmation of an additional case of pertussis in our high school population,” said Hayes. “Several others are exhibiting symptoms and are being tested. The original recommendations of the Livingston County Health Department remain in effect. Additional cases once the bacteria enters the school population are not unexpected. If your child exhibits symptoms of pertussis, please contact your health care provider.”
Department of Health Director Jennifer Rodriguez stressed that it is important to get immunized, and to recognize the difference between a clinical diagnosis by a doctor and a confirmed case based on lab results, which is required to be reported and investigated.
The Department of Health holds an immunization clinic the first Tuesday of every month, which for October was today, Oct. 6. Vaccinations are also available through local doctors’ offices.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vaccinated children and adults can become infected with and spread pertussis, but the disease is typically much less serious in vaccinated people.
New York State requires that any student with a clinical diagnosis for pertussis must stay out of school for five days for treatment.
The incubation period for whooping cough is usually seven to ten days with a range of four to 21 days and rarely may be as long as 42 days.
Coughing fits due to pertussis infection can last for up to 10 weeks or more, which is why this disease is sometimes known as the ‘100 day cough.’