Health and Community Services
January 22, 2019

Vaccination Program for Pregnant Women Key to Reducing the Risk of Pertussis (Whooping Cough)

The Department of Health and Community Services has started a Pertussis (whooping cough) immunization program for all pregnant woman in Newfoundland and Labrador.

This vaccination program which began on January 1, 2019, is in compliance with a recommendation by the National Advisory Committee on Immunization. The program is being administered free of charge through the province’s public health nursing clinics to women in their third trimester (27-32 weeks). The vaccine can be given outside this range depending on an individual’s medical history or other extenuating circumstances.

Whooping cough is a transmissible respiratory, bacterial infection that can be deadly for babies. Since babies are not administered the whooping cough vaccine until they are two months old, pregnant women are encouraged to avoid the gap in protection by getting the vaccine. This will allow the antibodies to be passed on to babies before birth.

For more information on the whooping cough vaccination program, contact your health care provider or local public health office.

“Immunizations are a safe and important part of a healthy pregnancy. Whooping cough is a serious disease that can be deadly for babies, and their mothers are the only ones who can give them protection before they are born. Babies don’t get vaccinated for whooping cough until they are two months old, so avoiding this gap in protection by having their mothers vaccinated is so important.”
Honourable John Haggie
Minister of Health and Community Services

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Media contact
Kathy Dicks-Peyton
Health and Community Services
709-729-6986, 699-1982 

2019 01 22                              11:15 a.m.