Case of whooping cough at Hickman High School

Dec 3, 2012

The 15th case of whooping cough has been reported in Boone County. Columbia Public Schools are working to prevent further cases of whooping cough after a confirmed case in the school district.

Spokesperson Michelle Baumstark confirmed there has been a case of pertussis, commonly referred to as whooping cough, at Hickman High School. She said school officials are following their typical process to combat further infections. 

“We’re working to notify any students who may have been in immediate contact and potentially exposed to notify their parents, helping them to be able to identify signs and symptoms,” said Baumstark.

Symptoms are similar to a common cold with the addition of severe or prolonged coughing attacks that may get worse with time.

Columbia Public Schools require students to have the DPT vaccination before enrolling or attending school. The immunization is intended to prevent diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus. But, parents of children in Columbia public schools are allowed to opt out of the required vaccine for personal or religious reasons. Baumstark was unsure whether or not the infected student had received the DPT vaccine.