Pertussis program expanded in Central Alberta

Pregnant women in third trimester offered pertussis vaccine

  • Nov. 1, 2016 3:58 p.m.

Due to sustained high rates of pertussis in Alberta Health Services (AHS) Central Zone, AHS is expanding the routine pertussis immunization program in the Zone – as of today – by offering pertussis vaccine to women in their third trimester of each pregnancy, regardless of previous pertussis immunization.

Offering vaccine to women in the third trimester of pregnancy is an important step in protecting infants, who are the most vulnerable to developing severe complications from pertussis.

“The rates of pertussis we’re seeing in Central Zone at this time suggest there is a greater than normal risk of pertussis, especially for unimmunized individuals,” said Dr. Digby Horne, Medical Officer of Health, Central Zone. “Immunization is not only safe and protective for pregnant women, it provides immunity to their infants after birth, protecting these infants before they’re old enough to be immunized themselves.”

Women in Central Zone who are 26 or more weeks pregnant are encouraged to call their local community health centre (public health) to book an appointment for this immunization. Some physician and obstetrician offices may also offer pertussis vaccine to these women; however, patients should call ahead to confirm availability. Please note that pertussis vaccine will not be offered through influenza immunization clinics that are currently underway.

As always, AHS encourages all caregivers and family members of young infants to ensure they are up-to-date on all vaccines. Parents should also ensure their children are fully immunized, for their age, according to the routine childhood immunization schedule.

Pertussis is a bacterial infection that causes severe coughing that lasts for weeks and can lead to pneumonia, convulsions, brain damage and even death. Approximately two-thirds of the pertussis cases confirmed to date in the Central Zone involved individuals who were unimmunized or under-immunized for their age.

“We know that rates of pertussis immunization in Central Zone are lower than other Zones of AHS,” said Horne. “We all play a part in protecting each other. Please get immunized.”

For more information on pertussis disease, visit http://immunizealberta.ca/i-need-know-more/diseases-covered/pertussis-whooping-cough.

– Fawcett

Just Posted

Sentencing postponed in Castor triple homicide

Jason Klaus and Josh Frank will appear in court again Feb. 14th

Creep Catcher member sentenced in Red Deer court Monday

Carl Young to be fined and placed on probation for 12 months, among other conditions

WATCH: Innisfail’s Berkley the bear celebrates first birthday

Discovery Wildlife Park’s newest Kodiak is excited for life this winter

Rebels lose 13th straight against Kamloops

Red Deer hasn’t won on home ice since Oct. 28th, 2017

Kings and Queens sweep Briercrest

RDC basketball is begining to gear up for the ACAC playoffs

WATCH: Setters Place officially opens in advance of the 2019 Canada Games

Red Deer is one step closer to the 2019 Canada Winter Games the opening of Setters Place

Back to work: U.S. government shutdown ends after Democrats relent

Short-term spending measure means both sides could see another shutdown stalemate in three weeks

Bell Media, NFL take appeal over Super Bowl ad rules to top court

At issue is a ban on substituting American ads with Canadian ones during the game’s broadcast

Sentencing postponed in Castor triple homicide

Jason Klaus and Josh Frank will appear in court again Feb. 14th

Cougar window shops at Banff grocery store

An RCMP officer spots a cougar outside an Alberta grocery store

$130K could get you on a dive to the Titanic

Hot summer ticket: $130K could get you on a dive to the Titanic off Newfoundland

UK’s Princess Eugenie, daughter of Prince Andrew, engaged

Princess Eugenie, the daughter of Prince Andrew and his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson, will marry Jack Brooksbank in Autumn 2018

German nurse charged with 97 more murders

Niels Hoegel, serving a life sentence for two murders, has been indicted in nearly 100 more killings.

Two men guilty in murders of Alberta family could face 75 years

The pair were found guilty of first-degree murder in the shooting deaths of Klaus’s parents and sister in a rural home near Castor, Alberta

Most Read