By Tim Jimenez
CHESTER COUNTY, Pa. (CBS) — There have been four confirmed cases of whooping cough in two Chester County Schools over the past few weeks.
Two students at Great Valley High School in Malvern were diagnosed with whooping cough, or pertussis, last week, according to school officials.
Hillsdale Elementary also confirmed two cases.
“And by regulation, if you have two in the same cluster of people, it’s considered an outbreak,” explains Betsy Walls, with the Chester County Health Department.
She says whooping cough begins with cold symptoms and then a cough that gets worse over a few weeks.
“It’s a very distinctive cough. And it just doesn’t go away. It just hangs around. It’s also been labeled over time as the ‘100 Days Cough.’”
Walls urges parents to make sure their children are vaccinated and practice good habits.
“We stress a lot of prevention with covering the cough and washing the hands. That works also for pertussis.”
She also says adults should make sure they’re up to date with their vaccinations.