The Rhode Island Department of Health (HEALTH) in conjunction with the Barrington Schools will be hosting a pertussis vaccination clinic for Barrington residents on Thursday, January 12 and Friday, January 13, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Barrington High School cafeteria, 220 Lincoln Avenue. Anyone with health insurance should bring his or her health insurance card to the clinic. Any Barrington resident who is uninsured will be vaccinated at no cost to the individual.
Due to the outbreak and based on a recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), HEALTH encourages anyone age 10 or older who has not previously received a Tdap vaccine and lives in Barrington get vaccinated. It is especially important for the following individuals to be vaccinated: · Anyone who has close contact with or cares for an infant younger than one year of age. · Any woman who is at least 20 weeks pregnant. (These women should contact their obstetricians to get vaccinated.) · Anyone with a weakened immune system (including chronic respiratory problem, neuromuscular disease, or immunodeficiency disorder). · Anyone who works at a school or childcare facility. · Anyone who provides direct patient care.
"Vaccination is the best prevention against pertussis," said Director of Health Michael Fine, MD. "This clinic is part of HEALTH's ongoing effort to prevent the further spread of pertussis in the Barrington community. Anyone who does not live in Barrington and needs to be vaccinated should contact his or her healthcare provider."
Pertussis is a vaccine-preventable disease that is also known as whooping cough. It is highly contagious and caused by a bacterial infection of the lungs. People with suspected or confirmed diagnosis of pertussis should stay out of work, school, or childcare until they have been on antibiotics for at least five days. HEALTH receives reports of about 60 cases of pertussis each year.