In California, under law, children are required to be vaccinated against pertussis, more commonly known as whopping cough. Despite the recent mandates for vaccinations throughout the schools in the state during 2012, the number of cases of whooping cough in the United States has reached a high of 60 years, said health officials.
According to a new report released late last week, close to 42,000 cases were reported in 2012, which represent the most since 1955. However, the U.S. Center for Disease Control is gathering more information and that number could increase to as high as 50,000.
For California, the most up to date numbers from the state’s health department show that between January 1, 2012 and April 24, 2012 there were 169 cases reported statewide of whooping cough.
Although there is a small risk of dying from pertussis, nationally there were 18 reported deaths last year due to the disease and some officials are concerned about the vaccine efficacy.
A report in November of 2012 found that kids in California who were fully vaccinated were less apt to contract whooping cough, but the same report also said that the longer the children had passed since being completely immunized; the more apt they were to catch the disease.
The report also said that the regimen for pertussis saw its efficacy drop from 98% during the first year to 71% five or more year after. Despite the decline in efficacy, the report still advises a vaccine for whooping cough.