Free whooping cough shots offered this weekend

Adults can get the whooping cough shot for free during two upcoming events this weekend in Everett and Lynnwood.

The immunizations are being offered as part of the efforts by the Snohomish Health District to slow the spread of a disease which is now an epidemic, sickening more than 400 children and adults in Snohomish County this year.

Low-income and uninsured adults can get the shots from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. during Saturday’s Nubian Jam at Forest Park and from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Latino Resource Fair at Edmonds Community College.

The shots, which protect against whooping cough, tetanus and diphtheria, will also be available next month from 4 to 7 p.m. Aug. 7 at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Everett in conjunction with National Night Out.

Three hundred doses of the vaccine will be available at each event.

Local and state health officials are urging adults to get vaccinated because most aren’t up to date on their shots.

The Snohomish Health District has vaccinated more than 1,600 adults at vaccination clinics this year.

Yet up to 15 cases of the disease are being reported each week, according to Dr. Gary Goldbaum, health officer for public health agency.

Adults are being targeted in the vaccination effort for several reasons.

An adult vaccine protecting against whooping cough wasn’t available until 2005, so many adults aren’t immunized.

Infants are particularly vulnerable to the disease. More than half of infants younger than a year old who get the disease are hospitalized.

Infants don’t begin the series of five childhood vaccinations until they’re about 2 months so. So health officials say the best way to protect them is to have everyone immunized who is in close contact with them.

Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or salyer@heraldnet.com.

Free vaccinations

The Snohomish Health District is offering free whooping cough shots to uninsured and low-income adults at three upcoming events:

Nubian Jam, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Forest Park, 802 E. Mukilteo Blvd. in Everett.

Latino Resource Fair, 2-5 p.m. Saturday at Edmonds Community College, 20000 68th Ave. W. in Lynnwood.

National Night Out, 4-7 p.m. Aug.7, South Everett Neighborhood Center at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, 215 W. Mukilteo Blvd. in Everett.

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