MARTINEZ, Calif. (KCBS) _ The recent outbreak of whooping cough in California has spurred a rash of vaccination clinics, including one in the East Bay on Friday.
People were lined up outside the Contra Costa Regional Medical Center in Martinez for a free whooping cough vaccination.
“It was in the newspaper, the West County Times and so I was more than happy to come out and have my children immunized,” said one mother.
It’s being called the worst outbreak of pertussis the state has seen since the early 60s.
Seven children, all under the age of three months, have already died this year and hundreds of people have come down with the bacterial infection.
Contra Costa County Health Department Immunization Coordinator Erika Jenssen said they are trying to stay in front of this epidemic by putting on four clinics a week in various locations around the county.
“ We had a very busy clinic earlier this morning. Last week, we were at the Concord Farmers Market and we immunized close to 400 people,” she said. “So people are quite concerned. We’re very happy with the response. We’re really trying to offer as much vaccine in different locations as possible.”
So far this year, Contra Costa County has seen 82 cases of whooping cough, compared to only 19 all of last year.