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Guidelines for the Control of Pertussis Outbreaks

This website is archived for historical purposes and is no longer being maintained or updated.

March 28, 2013: Content on this page kept for historical reasons.

Note as of Feb 2013, there are no plans for updating these guidelines. See note below.

Originally published in 2000 (amendments made in 2005 and 2006)

At a Glance

Guidelines for the Control of Pertussis Outbreaks Pertussis is an endemic disease in the United States, with periodic epidemics every 3 to 4 years. Because outbreaks of pertussis are relatively common, this document was written to help guide public health officials and healthcare workers in their efforts to prevent the spread of pertussis. Please note that these are not recommendations, only guidelines. Additional or differing recommendations may be made by state or local public health officials. The primary goal of pertussis outbreak control efforts is to decrease morbidity and mortality among infants; a secondary goal is to decrease morbidity among persons of all ages.


This document was written with input from a meeting held June 20-21, 1999 with persons who have expertise in the investigation and control of pertussis outbreaks.

Note: This website is being maintained for historical and archival purposes. These Guidelines have not been revised since 2006. Please view Pertussis Postexposure Antimicrobial Prophylaxis for up-to-date information on that practice. Please view Letter of Guidance for Parents and Clinicians during Outbreaks for updated tools to use during pertussis outbreaks in schools or other closed or contained settings.

Those chapters that have been amended in 2005 (Chapters 2, 3, 4, and 9) replaced material in the 2000 version. Consult the summary of all the January 2005 updates[2 pages] for a complete list of the all revisions and additions made to the guide in 2005. Chapter 3a was replaced by an MMWR article in February 2006.


Individual Downloads

Suggested citation: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Guidelines for the Control of Pertussis Outbreaks. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Atlanta, GA, 2000.

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