OAKLAND, Calif., May 26 (UPI) -- A U.S. study has found that children who are not vaccinated against whooping cough have 23 times as high a chance of getting the illness.
Researchers with Kaiser Permanente tracked children in Colorado between 1996 and 2007, The (Portland) Oregonian reported. They compared two groups, 156 who had confirmed pertussis, or whooping cough, and 595 who did not have it.
The results were published in the journal Pediatrics. Researchers say their study provides little comfort for parents who do not get their children vaccinated against communicable diseases and believe they will be protected by "herd immunity" because the children around them have received the vaccine.
"This study dispels one of the commonly held beliefs among vaccine-refusing parents -- that their children are not at risk for vaccine-preventable diseases," the Pediatrics report said.