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Pertussis (Whooping Cough) in Australia (Update)

19 Apr 2012

Pertussis (whooping cough) is an ogoing problem in Western Australia (WA). The outbreak in WA began in the middle of 2011, when 4019 pertussis cases were recorded for the year. This far in 2012, 1505 cases have been recorded, 1000 more than the same time period last year. Health officials report that new pertussis cases are now declining, however there is still significant pertussis transmission in the community.

In 2011, a total of 13 000 pertussis cases were reported in Australia as a whole.

Advice for Travellers

Travellers may be concerned either because of risk of contracting pertussis themselves or because, if infected, they may put very young children who are too young to be vaccinated at risk (e.g. grandparents visiting new grandchildren).

Travellers should ensure that all children are up-to-date with the UK vaccine schedule which protects against pertussis. Pertussis boosters are not recommended for adults in the UK.