Pratt County sees several cases of whooping cough

PRATT COUNTY, Kansas – Health officials are warning residents in Pratt County, who are suffering from a cold, to watch out for something more serious.

“It’s been a rough situation, and I wouldn’t want anybody to go through it.”

Whooping cough has been making its way through Pratt County.

It is affecting more than children who haven’t been vaccinated.

“It was terrible, coughing almost non-stop, deep hard cough really violent stuff, throwing up, coughing so hard sometimes that I was passing out,” said Randy Stone, recovering from cough.

Six cases have been confirmed in the county, but many more people have shown symptoms.

No one knows where the cough started.

“We try to identify where the common denominator is for a lot of cases, so coming up with a common denominator is important to do and so we were unable at this point in time to epi-link all six of them,” said Mary Ohl, Pratt County Health Department.

Whooping cough is easy to prevent, and it can be done with a vaccine when children are young and again when they turn 11 or 12 when the first vaccine starts to wear off.

“Their vaccine was kind of waning down where we needed to boost them again, so we got them in here and started boosting,” said Ohl. “They just hadn’t come in for their vaccine yet because they weren’t of age yet.”

Whooping cough starts out sounding like a normal cough and gets worse after several weeks, and for people like Randy, the cough can affect more than just their health.

“My wife had to go get the shot, luckily my son had the shot, luckily in his younger years, when he was getting ready to go to high school,” said Stone. “They both have shown symptoms for it so they both have been on the medicine for it. I’ve been to the doctor several times.”

The best way to prevent whooping cough is to make sure you and your child are vaccinated.

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