The Schuyler County Health Department in Rushville has confirmed notification of multiple cases of pertussis, also known as whooping cough in the county.
Schuyler County Health officials say they are working with the individuals, the Illinois Department of Public Health, the Schuyler-Industry School District, and local healthcare providers to identify individuals who may have been exposed.
Whooping cough is a highly contagious infection that affects the airways and is transferred through coughing and sneezing. The severe cough associated with the illness can last for weeks or months, sometimes leading to coughing fits or vomitting. The illness can be particularly deadly for those with compromised immune systems, infants, and the elderly.
The Schuyler County Health Department asks that you remain up-to-date on immunizations. The childhood vaccine’s effectiveness decreases over time and it is recommended that older children and adults get a booster.
WGEM reports there was also a similar such concern being reported across the river in Schuyler County, Missouri. On Sunday, health officials there reported multiple cases confirmed as parapertussis, which is a respiratory illness that presents similar symptoms as pertussis, but is less severe and less infectious, and lasts only 7-10 days.
If you have any questions or concerns and are a resident of Schuyler County, contact the health department at 217-322-6775.