Fermanagh parents warned of rise in whooping cough

PARENTS in Fermanagh and across the North have been put on alert after five babies died in England due to whooping cough.

In worrying news for parents, there’s been a significant rise in cases of whooping cough, which can be extremely serious for babies.

According to the Public Health Agency, there have been 769 cases of whooping cough from January to May.


It’s been a sharp rise from just the two reported cases of the infection between 2021 and 2023.

Public Health Agency consultant, Louise Flanagan, has urged Fermanagh parents to be vigilant of the ever-spreading whooping cough.

“Whooping cough spreads very easily and can make babies and young children in particular very ill, and sadly can even be fatal in young babies or people with health conditions,” she said.

Also known medically as ‘pertussis’, whooping cough is a bacterial infection of the lungs and breathing tubes, which spreads easily.

“The good news is that it can be prevented through vaccinations, so it’s really important that parents get their babies vaccinated against it as part of the childhood vaccination programme and that pregnant women also get vaccinated, as this will help protect their unborn baby from getting whooping cough in the weeks after birth,” said Public Health Agency consultant, Louise Flanagan.

Fermanagh parents are being encouraged to chat to their GP about whether their children have received the necessary and up-to-date vaccinations against whooping cough.

“Just like we have seen with the MMR vaccine, which helps protect against measles, mumps and rubella, there has been a decrease in the percentage of children and pregnant women receiving the whooping cough vaccination,” said PHA’s Ms Flanagan.


“All childhood vaccines provide the best protection for children against severe infections.”

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