CHICAGO (CBS) — Two children in the southwest suburbs have come down with the highly contagious illness pertussis, or whooping cough, and a school has warned other parents about it.
A spokeswoman for the Cook County Department of Public Health said a student at Kolmar Elementary School in Crestwood and the student’s sibling developed whooping cough over the winter break.
The school notified other parents of the situation earlier this week.
Children are supposed to be vaccinated against pertussis along with many other illnesses, but it’s unclear whether the children diagnosed with the disease had received the vaccination.
CCDPH Senior Medical Officer Rachel Rubin said vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and your kids from getting pertussis. DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis) shots have long been required by law in Illinois. Exceptions can only be made for medical and religious reasons.
“Certainly the people that have not been vaccinated are more at risk for getting pertussis, of course; but there are reported cases of people that have been vaccinated that have gotten whooping cough,” she said.