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Pertussis in Cherokee County

Pertussis, or whooping cough, has been diagnosed in some children in Cherokee County.

Pertussis is caused by a type of bacteria that infections the upper airway. The bacteria release toxins that cause the airways to swell. The bacteria are very contagious and is spread from person to person through coughing or sneezing.

Older children and adults can have whooping cough and not even know it because the symptoms can be mild. But they can infect babies who often become very ill.

Whooping cough can be diagnosed by your doctor or other health care provider by a physical examination and laboratory tests.

You should see your health care provider if your child:

  • has been in contact with someone diagnosed with pertussis
  • A cough lasting two weeks or more
  • Severe symptoms
  • Is less than two months old and has a respiratory infection (cough, runny nose, difficulty breathing)

The best way to prevent whooping cough is through vaccination (the DTaP vaccine). Make sure you and your children are current on your vaccinations. This is especially important for pregnant women – they can safely receive the vaccine while pregnant.

For more information, visit CDC’s website:

Zika virus has been in the news recently, especially regarding the risk of birth defects when pregnant women become infected with the virus.  Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites.  It is not spread from person to person.  Zika virus disease is generally mild.  Symptoms include fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red, irritated eyes). Visit our Zika Virus Awareness page that has detailed and useful information in the link below from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Zika Virus Awareness

Please view Cherokee Nation’s Zika Virus fact sheet or key messages about the Zika Virus from the CDC.

image1zika image2zika

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Emergency Contact

In the event of a public health emergency, please contact (918) 772-4011.

CN Public Health

1325 E. Boone

Tahlequah, OK 74464