TopicsImmunisation & IllnessUrgent warning as whooping cough cases rise

Urgent warning as whooping cough cases rise

A joint statement from the Royal Medical Colleges is encouraging vaccination uptake as whooping cough (pertussis) cases rise across the UK.

Data from the UKHSA shows cases of whooping cough have spiked in England, with the South being a particular hotspot. Similar trends have been noted in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Professionals are concerned that the rise is due to a lack of vaccination uptake.

The joint statement provides information on symptoms, precautions and treatments for parents and carers. The Royal Medical Colleges are asking parents and carers to also check their child’s vaccination record and ensure it is up to date.

Professor Kamila Hawthorne, Chair of the Royal College of GPs said:

‘This outbreak, and the spike in measles cases at the start of 2024, have brought to the fore the dangers of vaccine complacency and hesitancy, and the importance of community outreach in addressing concerns and highlighting the effectiveness and safety of vaccinations.’

Pregnant women are eligible for the pertussis vaccine between 16 and 32 weeks. This early intervention helps protect their baby before they are old enough to have the vaccine at eight weeks.

Community Practitioner reported a rise in in England and Wales earlier this year. The article also looks at how community practitioners can help.

Image | Shutterstock


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