Beginning with the 2013-2014 school year, all students entering seventh grade must receive or have already received a dose of Tdap vaccine on or after their 7th birthday to protect them from pertussis (whooping cough). Ewing Middle School will need a South Carolina Certificate of Immunization showing that he or she has received this newly required Tdap vaccine. The Tdap vaccine protects against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis. According to articles published in The Gaffney Ledger and flyers from Spartanburg Regional, protection provided by the DTaP shots they received as children fades with time.
* Tetanus, also called lockjaw, includes muscle spasms in the jaw, difficulty swallowing and stiffness or pain in the muscles of the neck, shoulders or back. The spasms can also spread to the muscles of the chest and airway and interfere with breathing.
*Diphtheria is a respiratory disease caused by bacteria that can cause the breathing tube to be blocked. It includes gradual onset of a sore throat and low-grade fever. It can lead to breathing problems, heart failure and even death.
*Pertussis, or whopping cough, is a cough illness that can last for weeks or months. It starts with cold-like symptoms. The cough develops, which worsens and begins to occur in sudden, uncontrollable bursts. The coughing spells associated with the infection often sound like “whooping” as the person gasps for air when they breathe in.
The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control is offering free Tdap vaccines at a vaccination clinic at Ewing Middle School on Monday, August 12, from 8:30 am until 4:30 pm – walk-in only.