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The whooping cough epidemic continues to worsen in the state with the number of cases reaching more than 1,000 so far, according to the state Health Department.

Health officials say that at the rate things are going now, we could see as many as 3,000 cases this year, which would be the most in the state in six decades.

Teens and adults are urged to get vaccinations. Officials note that vaccination is especially important for those in close contact with babies less than 1 year old.

Here’s what state Secretary of Health, Mary Selecky had to say in a news release today:

“We’re very concerned about the risk to infants, especially because of how quickly whooping cough is spreading. Whooping cough can be life threatening for infants, and they’re too young to get enough doses of vaccine to be protected. That’s why we want everyone else to make sure they’re vaccinated against whooping cough.”