Please hold on while I get up on my soapbox.
Kris and I never watch the news at night (unless you count the Daily Show). But last night we happened to be watching the NBC Nightly News and a story about the recent whooping cough (pertussis) outbreak in Washington (and some other states) caught our attention. Then when I was researching a pediatrician this morning, the doctor I chose had recently written a blog post about it.
In a few areas of the US (ours included, a baby in our county recently died from whooping cough) the disease is “back”. The main reason it’s showing up again is that adults aren’t getting the needed booster shot. If an adult gets a mild version (just an annoying cough) they can spread the full blown version to babies, which can be deadly. It’s definitely something to take seriously, especially for us since Kate will have very compromised lungs to start with and since the instance of the disease in Washington has risen so greatly in the past year. Kate would not survive a whooping cough infection, so in my first act of Mama Bear-ness, I sent an email out to our upcoming visitors to check about getting the booster, as well as a flu shot.
If you want more info:
The basic take-away here is that the more adults who are vaccinated, the less chance there is of the disease spreading to babies and children. Lots of our friends are having babies and I think it’s important to look into it for them as well as for us. It’s just the tetanus shot with the pertussis vaccince built in – it’s not a huge deal to get, but it can save lives.
There, I’ve stepped down from my soapbox. Thank you for listening :)