Rise in whooping cough

Pregnant women are to be vaccinated against whooping cough after a seven-fold increase in cases in the East of England since 2008.

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  1. Megan Boot

Parents surprised by new advice on whooping cough

A big rise in whooping cough cases has prompted the government to offer a jab to expectant mothers Credit: ITV Anglia / Megan Boot

At a 'Bumps & Babies' group in Cambridge, parents were surprised to hear the advice about whooping cough vaccinations. Several of them had only recently given birth & said that had they known about the dangers they would have had the vaccination.

The Department of Health say that regardless of whether you've had a vaccination before, women who are 28 - 38 weeks pregnant should get the vaccine. It means that the protective antibodies the mother gets are passed onto her baby.

That should give the child enough cover until they can start their own immunisation at around two months' old. From Monday, women across the country will be offered the vaccination.

The vaccine, Repevex, is the same one given as a booster to three year olds. The Department of Health has confirmed that extra stocks have been provided to cater for expectant mums.

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