Only 30% of Adults Have Received a Whooping Cough Vaccination; More Needed to Protect People at Highest Risk

Lung Association educates adults living with chronic lung disease about the importance of pertussis vaccination

Pertussis, commonly referred to as whooping cough, is a serious and highly contagious respiratory illness. There is a vaccine available for whooping cough, however only 30% of adults in the U.S. received it in the past 10 years. The American Lung Association, in collaboration with Sanofi, are working to educate adults living with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) about the potential dangers of pertussis and the importance of vaccination.

“Here in the U.S., there are approximately 21.1 million adults living with asthma and 12.5 million adults living with COPD. For these people, whooping cough can lead to severe, sometimes life-threatening health challenges including exacerbation of their chronic medical conditions,” said Harold Wimmer, National President and CEO for the American Lung Association. “Thankfully, there is a vaccine available, Tdap, which is specifically developed for adults and helps protect against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis.”

Vaccination is the best way to help protect against pertussis. Preventing pertussis helps reduce the risk of hospitalization and severe outcomes for high-risk individuals. 

The Lung Association’s Pertussis Educational Campaign includes online resources with key facts about pertussis, an online assessment and targeted outreach to raise awareness about the disease to high-risk individuals.

If you are living with COPD or asthma, visit to learn more and speak with your healthcare provider about getting a vaccination to help protect against pertussis.

For more information, contact:

Jill Dale
[email protected]

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