Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 9°C

ESTD 1874 Search

The pigs are coming. Find out more about

Pigs Gone Wild

here.

Suffolk: Health chiefs urge pregnant women to have whooping cough vaccine after rise in cases

10:03 07 February 2013

Chelsea Thompson and Todd Haynes hold a photo of their daughter Sarae Thompson-Haynes, who died from Whooping Cough

Chelsea Thompson and Todd Haynes hold a photo of their daughter Sarae Thompson-Haynes, who died from Whooping Cough

HEALTH chiefs are urging pregnant women to get vaccinated against whooping cough after new figures reveal a rise in cases in the county.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) are at a loss to explain the sharp rise across the region with nearly ten times more cases of the infection reported in the east of England in 2012, compared to 2011.

The HPA is no nearer to finding the cause or the reasons behind the outbreak, which has led to the death of 13 babies across the country in the last year.

In Suffolk there were 174 whooping cough cases last year, compared to the year before. And in Norfolk 14 cases in 2011 rose to 157 in 2012. In Great Yarmouth and Waveney there was a jump from four to 60 in the same time.

It comes as figures, revealed in Monday’s Star, show 73% of eligible expectant mums in Suffolk had the vaccine in December – an 84.8% rise in two months – and higher than the national average of 54.5%.

Chelsea Thompson, 21, from Chantry, who lost her four-week-old daughter Sarae Thompson-Haynes to the infection last March, is expecting her second daughter in the next few weeks.

She told The Star: “I don’t know why anyone would think twice about having it [the vaccine].”

The bacterial infection can affect anyone, but babies and young children are more at risk. Cases of whooping cough were prevalent in the 1950s, when it cased hundreds of deaths a year, resulting in a vaccine.

Mary Ramsay, head of immunisation at the HPA, said: “We would like to remind pregnant women how serious this infection can be in young babies and how it can, in some cases, cause death.

“It is important that, parents still ensure their children are vaccinated against whooping cough on time, even babies of women who have had the vaccine in pregnancy – this is to continue their baby’s protection through childhood,” she said.

Related articles

0 comments

Southwold

House prices have risen by more than 400% in some parts of Suffolk over the last 20 years, new figures show.

Cloud over Little Glemham. Image: Simon Talbot-Hurn

Bank Holiday beach-goers should be prepared for “unsettled” weather this weekend, forecasters have said.

Sean Hickey from Haverhill who died while out cycling in Clare

A memorial jersey left in tribute to a cyclist killed in Clare after being hit by a car has been reported stolen two days before his funeral.

Question Time was last in Ipswich in 2013.

Former Labour Party leader Ed Miliband – a leading campaigner in the campaign to stay in the EU – is among the guests expected at Ipswich Corn Exchange when Question Time comes to town tonight.

The Ipswich Foyer in Star Lane.

A centre that has helped thousands of vulnerable young people in Ipswich get off the streets and back into education and work looks set to close due to a shortage of funding.

Chris May's family: Mum Lorraine May and sisters Gemma and Charlene May.

The family of missing Chris May have said they are angered by the knowledge someone knows what has happened to him but have not come forward.

Saxmundham

Suffolk police are investigating after a woman in her 60s was sexually assaulted at her home in Saxmundam.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24