Public Health warns parents about whooping cough in infants

Public health officials are encouraging parents to immunize their infants and children against the 14 vaccine-preventable childhood diseases, including whooping cough and chicken pox

The Southwest Health District says they saw an increase in whooping cough cases in young children last year, and they say there is a simple solution to decrease these cases.

Health officials say giving infants the pertussis â" or whooping cough â" vaccine can keep your children safe. They say there were 21,000 cases of whooping cough in children younger than six months in 2010, with 26 of those resulting in death.

Public Health officials are also encouraging parents to vaccinate their children for chicken pox.

There are 14 vaccine-preventable childhood diseases. Health officials say if children are not immunized for some of these diseases, they can be denied attendance at school.

To learn more about vaccinating your child, contact your local health department or visit the Southwest Georgia Public Health website for that information. Public Health officials say most vaccines for the vaccine-preventable childhood diseases are covered by insurance.