Spotlight on Our Team: Malia Nogle, MPH

November 14, 2019

In each issue of the Epigram, we are pleased to introduce you to a member of the Disease Prevention and Response team at SRHD. In this issue we feature Epidemiologist, Malia Nogle, MPH. Malia works in the Communicable Disease Epidemiology program where she focuses on notifiable condition investigation, influenza surveillance, special pathogen emergency preparedness and response, community education, and more recently, served as the Epidemiology staff lead working with Spokane County Jail and Geiger Corrections to provide hepatitis A vaccine. Malia has been with SRHD since 2014 and previously worked in the Food Safety program.

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Everyday Ethics: Dilemmas We Face When Parents Refuse Vaccines

November 14, 2019

You are seeing a 6-month old boy in your primary care practice. He is completely unimmunized, and parents are staunchly against DTaP. There is currently a pertussis epidemic with 150 cases in your state and more than 2,000 cases nationally. After explaining the risk and consequences of getting pertussis and encouraging immunization, the parents still refuse. What would you do?

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Only 35 percent of Pregnant Women Receive Both Influenza and Tdap Vaccines

November 14, 2019

New data released from the CDC show not enough pregnant women are being vaccinated against influenza and pertussis during pregnancy. A survey of nearly 2,100 pregnant women ages 18 to 49 years taken during the 2018-19 influenza season found only 54 percent of pregnant women reported vaccination with influenza and only 55 percent reported vaccination with Tdap during pregnancy. Only 35 percent of women received both vaccines.

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Increase in Pertussis Cases Observed in 2019

November 14, 2019

A total of 70 confirmed and probable pertussis infections have been investigated by Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) staff so far this year. Most have been unrelated cases. While only slightly fewer cases were reported during 2018 (65), almost two thirds of last year’s total were related to a large outbreak at a residential boarding school. In 2017, only 32 cases were reported. This year, one adult and two infants have been hospitalized. Vaccination status has varied, though as expected, many cases have occurred in children and adults who have been unimmunized, partially immunized or whose immunization status was unknown.

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