The New Brunswick Department of Health has confirmed a case of whooping cough at a Moncton high school.
Students at Bernice MacNaughton High School were sent home with a letter on Thursday informing their parents of the confirmed diagnosis.
Whooping cough, also known as pertussis, is a highly contagious disease that causes a severe cough that can last for months. For infants under the age of one, it can be deadly.
The department of health is looking into the situation and says more information will be provided to parents if other cases are confirmed.
Kim Mowat, whose daughter is in Grade 11 at Bernice MacNaughton High School, said she’s not concerned with new of a confirmed case of whooping cough.
“I think the school has done very well at informing the parents,” Mowat said.
“I think it is under control and I’m not alarmed.”
Symptoms of whooping coughs for older children and adults can appear as cold-like symptoms with a constant cough that lasts longer than a week, according to Health Canada.
For young infants, symptoms can include a severe cough, choking after coughing, feeding poorly or having difficulty breathing.
The province is asking that those who develop symptoms to see their family physician or an after-hours clinic and inform them that you may have come in contact with whooping cough.
Tests can be conducted to confirm a diagnosis and will allow the province’s public health department to follow up and protect others who may be at risk for the disease.
The New Brunswick health department says those infected with pertussis should stay home from school until “five days from the start of treatment or if no treatment is given until 3 weeks since the onset of cough or until the end of cough, whichever occurs first.”
The confirmed case of pertussis comes a little more than a week after a case of active tuberculosis was diagnosed at the same high school.
With files from Shelley Steeves