The Merced County Department of Public Health said it’s offering special immunization clinics at the county fair this week.
The clinics will provide free vaccinations for whooping cough and swine flu.
The agency said so far this year, there have been 15 confirmed cases and 10 suspected cases under investigation of whooping cough in the county. The average number of cases in the county is nine; there have been no deaths.
The department said the highest priority is the immunization of parents and caregivers of infants from birth to 6 months old. Infants under 3 months old are the most vulnerable.
Whopping cough usually starts out like a common cold, but the disease should be suspected if a cough lasts two weeks or longer. It’s contagious, and precautions should be taken not to expose other people, the department said in a news release.
It also said that H1N1 swine flu vaccination continues to be a priority. Only those who’ve had the disease or immunization are protected. More cases are expected in the flu season this fall, so the department recommended getting vaccinations now.
Public health nurses are available to provide information and immunizations for whooping cough and swine flu at the fair. Immunizations will be available at a booth in a corner of the Commerce Building on Friday from 5-9 p.m.; Saturday from noon to 6 p.m.; and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.
You can also request immunizations through your primary care physician, the news release said, or you can contact the departent at (209) 381-1010 for other public health clinic times. Other information is available at www.co.merced.ca.us/health