Waukesha County and the State of Wisconsin experienced an outbreak of pertussis in 2012. In 2012 there were 477 cases of pertussis in Waukesha County as compared to an average of 27 cases in a non-outbreak year. While pertussis has decreased in 2013, the preliminary case count is still above average at 43 cases. This number will increase because of an influx of reports received in October and November that are not yet finalized.
How can pertussis be prevented?
Vaccines to prevent pertussis are available for infants, children, adolescents and adults. The vaccine for adolescents and adults is 70% effective according to the CDC and remains the best way to prevent the disease. It is effective in preventing severe illness and hospitalizations.
How is pertussis controlled in schools?
Students and staff who are diagnosed with pertussis are isolated and do not attend school until no longer infectious (after 5 days of appropriate antibiotic). Notifications are sent to parents to increase awareness of symptoms and promote early diagnosis. Closing schools is not necessary and is not the standard approach for the control of pertussis.
For more information on Pertussis, please click here for the Pertussis Fact Sheet
A communicable disease is an illness that can be transmitted from person to person, animal to person, or inanimate object to person. Examples of communicable diseases include: tuberculosis, E. coli O157:H7, hepatitis A, measles, and AIDS.
Reporting of communicable diseases is required by Wisconsin State Statute 252.05 and Wisconsin Administrative Code DHS 145. Individuals required to report communicable diseases include physicians, nurses, laboratory personnel, school and daycare personnel, and any others with knowledge of disease.
Communicable Disease Follow-up
Waukesha County Public Health Division is the agency designated by state law to receive reports of communicable disease in Waukesha County residents. Upon receipt of a communicable disease report, an investigation is conducted to determine the source of infection and to prevent further disease spread in the community.
How are communicable diseases reported?
Communicable disease reports can be received electronically through the Wisconsin Electronic Disease Surveillance System (WEDSS), or can be phoned, faxed or mailed to the Waukesha County Public Health Division.
Additional Information and Fact Sheets
Wisconsin Tuberculosis Program
Wisconsin West Nile Virus information
Waukesha County Public Health Division Fact Sheets
If further information is desired, please contact the Public Health Division at 262-896-8430, or toll-free at 1-800-540-3620. TTY/TDD 262-896-8234.
If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please contact a medical professional or call 911.