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Whooping cough rates soar

AS THE debate about vaccinations continues to rage, NSW Shadow Minister for Health, Walt Secord, has released figures showing NSW whooping cough has reached a five year high of 12,240 cases, compared with 3,135 cases in 2014.

Mr Secord said it was time the Baird Government stepped up its public health message on vaccinations.

“Vaccination is a 20th century public health achievement – it saves lives but sadly, large scale vaccinations have allowed a small fringe to become complacent about the welfare of our nation’s children – especially in regard to measles, whooping cough, mumps and other deadly diseases,” Mr Secord said.

“While the NSW and Federal governments have taken some steps in relation to this issue, there is still more work to be done.

“It is heartbreaking to see that immunisation rates in some parts of the state – such as the North Coast and Sydney’s east – have slipped to the levels of the developing world.”

Whooping cough (also known as pertussis) is a serious respiratory infection that causes a long coughing illness. In babies, the infection can sometimes lead to pneumonia and occasionally, brain damage or death.

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