There have been three whooping cough deaths in newborn babies in England and Wales during October 2012. This brings the total number of newborn baby deaths from whooping cough this year in England and Wales to 13.
In the Isle of Man, to date there have been 17 confirmed cases reported to the Public Health Directorate; however, this is likely to be an under-estimate since the disease is mild in adults and older children and they may not seek medical attention.
The Department of Health, Isle of Man, announced on 28 September 2012 that it is offering whooping cough vaccination to pregnant women between 28 and 38 weeks of pregnancy.
Advice to pregnant women:
• If you are pregnant and between 28-38 weeks, please ensure that you receive the whooping cough vaccine. The vaccine will protect your newborn baby against whooping cough, which can be extremely serious in babies.
• If you have other children, please ensure that they have a complete course of vaccination as recommended. This will protect them and reduce the chances of them passing on the infection to your newborn baby.
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