Whooping Cough cases among the highest here in the South West
by Tanya Mercer
Cases of whooping cough have rocketed across the country, with confirmed cases in the South West among the highest in England - two and a half times the national average. Bristol had 155 cases confirmed in 2012, compared with just 18 in the last peak year of 2008.
Pregnant women and their unborn babies are particularly at risk. Health experts are urging expectant mothers across the region to get vaccinated.
Health chiefs in North Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire are warning of the dangers of whooping cough following a four-fold rise in the disease in some parts of the region. Doctors say it's vitally important that children's vaccinations are up to date.
In North Somerset, there have been 23 cases this year compared with five for the whole of last year. South Gloucestershire NHS has reported 26 cases this year against eight last year.