To the Editor.

Thirteen persons with pertussis disease onset in 1994 and 1995 were reported to have died by state and local health departments to the national Supplemental Pertussis Surveillance System (SPSS), which is coordinated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). By contacting all states and US territories to confirm the number of deaths during this time period, we determined that two of the cases were inaccurately listed as deaths and identified five additional pertussis deaths. Of the total 16 pertussis deaths (10 in 1994, 6 in 1995), 12 (75%) were confirmed by positive culture. All deaths occurred in children <3 months of age and only 1 had received any pertussis immunization. This distribution of the age and vaccination status of pertussis deaths is similar to that found among 23 pertussis deaths reported in 1992 and 1993.

To assess the completeness of reporting to the SPSS,...

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