NEWS 19 Wednesday, June 12, 2019 Whooping cough top-up ‘after 5 years’ As research highlights the waning potency of the whooping cough vaccine over time, experts warn Australians need a booster jab after five years if they are around infants. Immunisation Coalition chairman and infectious diseases paediatrician Robert Booy said: “Australia has an intensive vaccination schedule for whooping cough or pertussis, but the protection does wane, and if you have not had a shot in the last five years then make sure you get a top-up.” Ten-year top-ups are often recommended, but Professor Booy said a five-year top-up was best, particularly if there was a baby in the family. The National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System showed an increase of 740 notified cases for January to June 10 to 4935, over last year’s 4195 for the same period. A study in the journal Pediatrics found that in fully vaccinated children the risk of pertussis increased as more time passed since their last dose. The researchers from the Vaccine Study Center at Kaiser Permanente Northern California’s Division of Research believe waning effectiveness between doses contributes to outbreaks. “The good thing is that in Australia we have a booster shot for kids in high school which helps keep up the protection,” Professor Booy said. Every year nationally an average of one death and more than 200 hospitalisations related to pertussis occur in infants under six months. Her strength and value is enhanced because she is so clearly not like Kyrgios or Tomic. Jackie Sinnerton The Porsche Cayenne Event. Porsche Centre Perth 101 Stirling Highway, Nedlands WA 6009 Tel: 08 9273 3131 15 June – 22 June, 2019. www.porschecentreperth.com.au/cayenneevent.
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