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Wentzville School District confirms multiple cases of whooping cough

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WENTZVILLE, Mo. – The St. Charles County Health Department and Wentzville School District have notified parents at two elementary schools in the district after a handful of students developed whooping cough.

Last week, the district confirmed two cases of pertussis – one in a first-grade classroom at Boone Trail Elementary and one in a fifth-grade classroom at Peine Ridge Elementary. The classrooms were cleaned and parents of each class contacted.

By Monday, the district received word of three more cases of whooping cough in the same classroom at Peine Ridge. In this instance, all parents at the school were notified of the issue and the county health department was brought to provide additional guidance. The school called in extra custodians to clean the entire school with disinfectant.

Symptoms for the illness include coughing, runny nose, sneezing, and possibly a fever.

The US Department of Health and Human Services recommends routine vaccination to protect against pertussis. The HHS says vaccines are needed for babies, children, teens, adults, and pregnant women. A pertussis vaccination schedule is available online at vaccines.gov.

In addition, the best way to prevent spreading whooping cough is by covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze and to wash your hands.

In mid-October, 15 students tested positive for whooping cough at the Festus High School and Intermediate School around mid-October.

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