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Stop whooping cough: Free pertussis shots for adults, Feb. 4, in Marysville and Everett

SNOHOMISH COUNTY — Snohomish Health District and its community partners will offer free vaccine to protect adults from pertussis, or whooping cough, at two sites from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Feb. 4:

  • Snohomish Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., Everett, WA 98201
  • Sea Mar Community Health Center, 9710 State Ave., Marysville, WA 98270

The clinics want to attract pregnant women in their third trimester, and adults who have close contact with infants, young children, or pregnant women in Snohomish County. These high-risk groups include child care workers and health care workers.

Although a few walk-in slots will be available, a telephone call center staffed by Medical Reserve Corps volunteers will make appointments for callers from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Jan. 30 through Feb. 3 at 425-388-5088. Download vaccine information sheets and consent forms in English and Spanish at the Health District’s Web site home page,www.snohd.org.

The Health District purchased about 450 doses of Tdap vaccine with a $14,000 grant from The Everett Clinic Foundation to help fight the current epidemic of pertussis in Snohomish County. Whooping cough continues to rise in Snohomish County, climbing ninefold from 25 cases in all of 2010 to a total of 222 confirmed cases in 2011. The total for 2012 as of Jan. 25 stands at 41.

Whooping cough is a highly contagious respiratory disease that is particularly harmful to infants, who have no immunity. To date, eight infants have been hospitalized, including one baby who died last summer.

“The only protection we can give newborns is to vaccinate the people who surround them – siblings, parents, grandparents, and other caregivers,” said Dr. Gary Goldbaum, Health Officer and Director of the Snohomish Health District. “The vaccine wanes over time, so even if you’ve had pertussis or the vaccine when you were younger, you still need the Tdap vaccine now.”

Health District staff will administer the vaccine at the Everett and Marysville sites. Influenza vaccine for adults also will be available at both sites.

“We are grateful to The Everett Clinic Foundation and to Sea Mar Community Health Center for helping us fight the spread of whooping cough in Snohomish County,” said Dr. Goldbaum. “We very much appreciate our productive collaboration with The Everett Clinic Foundation, Sea Mar Community Health Center/Marysville, and the Medical Reserve Corps.”

Established in 1959, the Snohomish Health District works for a safer and healthier Snohomish County through disease prevention, health promotion, and protection from environmental threats. Find more information about the Health District at www.snohd.org; Sea Mar Community Health Centers at www.seamar.org/; and The Everett Clinic Foundation at www.everettclinic.com/About_Us/The_Everett_Clinic_Foundation.ashx.

 

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