A warning was issued Friday about a whooping cough outbreak in Jefferson and Shelby counties. Nine children have tested positive for the contagious respiratory disease, the Alabama Department of Public Health announced. More than 20 others have a pertussis-like illness.
The outbreak was linked to several places, including: the Grants Mill and Greystone campuses of Church of the Highlands, the YMCA Greystone branch, the Mount Laurel library, Mount Laurel Elementary Summer Singers Camp, Shades Valley Community Church, YMCA Legacy Day Camp, and Winshape Camp at Double Oak Community Church.
The department says anyone who attended gatherings or events at those facilities in June or July, and has symptoms or develops them, should contact their doctor immediately.
Pertussis begins with symptoms including a runny nose, low grade fever, and cough. It progresses to violent coughing, making it difficult for those infected to breathe, resulting in a "whooping" sound.