OTTUMWA-Staff of Ottumwa Community School District received notification on Tuesday morning May 16th that there are currently two confirmed cases of pertussis, or whooping cough as it is more commonly known, at Ottumwa High School.
Superintendent Nicole Kooiker said that the district is following the contagious disease protocol and that they are working with the Wapello County Health Department.
Pertussis (whooping cough) is a highly contagious respiratory disease. It is known for causing violent and uncontrollable coughing fits that make it hard for the patient to breath. When they attempt to take a deep breath during these coughing fits, a sound is made that resembles a “whoop.” People of all ages can be affected by the illness, however, it is most dangerous to babies. There is a vaccine available.