This time, the student attended Carlson Elementary School. The district says the student is being treated at home and is not in school, but since whooping cough or pertussis is so contagious and potentially dangerous, parents are being encouraged to contact their child’s school nurse, the RPS Health Services Office, or the Winnebago County Health Department, especially if their child may be exhibiting any symptoms of the disease. A letter sent home to parents is attached to this article.
In November, two other confirmed cases of whooping cough were reported at Rolling Green and Hillman Elementary Schools.
Pertussis vaccinations are required for students in Illinois, but may not be 100% effective and booster shots are needed as well. Pertussis is treatable with antibiotics, but is also highly contagious and can be easily spread from person to person through coughing and sneezing. School officials say people in close contact with children or adults diagnosed with pertussis may also need to be treated with antibiotics.
To learn more about Pertussis, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: cdc.gov/pertussis, or contact the Winnebago County Health Department at 815-720-4000.