‘Mums-to-be’ are eligible for a free Whooping Cough vaccination to help protect themselves and their baby. This year, pregnant women in Nuneaton, Bedworth, North Warwickshire and surrounding areas can receive their vaccination when attending their 20 week scan at the hospital.
Whooping cough (also known as pertussis) is a serious disease that can lead to pneumonia and permanent brain damage. There is a lot of whooping cough around at the moment and babies who are too young to start their vaccinations are at greatest risk. Most young babies with whooping cough will be admitted to hospital and they are at risk of dying from the disease.
Getting vaccinated while you're pregnant is the most effective was to protect your baby from developing whooping cough in the first few weeks of their life.
The immunity you get from the vaccine will pass to your baby through the placenta. This will help protect your baby until they are old enough to have their routine baby immunisations (at 2, 3 and 4 months).
The best time to get vaccinated, so that you can protect your baby, is from weeks 20-32 of pregnancy. Because of this, you will be offered the vaccination at your 20 week scan.
If you have already had this scan, then you can request the vaccination from your midwife at your antenatal appointment or you can just turn up to Floor 1, maternity building at the hospital.
The Maternity Service at George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust will also be running a Whooping Cough Vaccination in Pregnancy Awareness Week on their Facebook page from Monday, 20 – Sunday, 26 March 2017. Here, you will find a host of information about the vaccination, including how it works and why it is important for mums-to-be to get vaccinated.
Antenatal Clinic Manager, Victoria Preece-Jones said: “We are excited to be offering this service to help protect our mums and their babies this year and would encourage anyone who is pregnant to take up this offer.”
The whooping cough vaccine is not a live vaccine, which means it cannot cause whooping cough in you or your baby.
Further information about pregnancy and your Whooping Cough vaccination can be found here
More information about maternity services at George Eliot Hospital can be found in our comprehensive maternity advice web pages:
or George Eliot Hospital Maternity Service’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/GEHMaternity/
The maternity unit also offers early bird tours, antenatal classes and a wide range of other services.