Many Adults May Not Be Protected Against Whooping Cough

DETROIT (WWJ) – Can you remember the last time you got a booster for whooping cough? If you’re like most Americans – probably not.

WWJ Health Reporter Sean Lee has the results of a troubling new survey.

A new U of M poll found 61 percent of adults say they don’t know when they were last vaccinated against whooping cough also known as pertussis.

The disease can be fatal to newborns who don’t start developing immunity until shots begin at two months.

U of M Researcher Sara Clark says many adults aren’t aware vaccine protection wears off over time.

“If the people who are going to be around a newborn can get that pertussis vaccination before that child is born, that’s going to offer a little cocoon of protection,” said Clark.

The poll also found more than 70 percent of adults think parents have the right to insist that friends and family get vaccinated before visiting with a newborn.

Read more about the signs and symptoms of whooping cough – here. 

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