It’s news that’s both devastating and infuriating.
NSW Health has revealed a baby that died last month from whooping cough had not been vaccinated against the preventable disease.
The child passed away in the Hunter New England health district last month
NSW Health’s communicable disease director Vicky Sheppeard said “we understand they (the child) had not received any doses of the vaccine,” The Daily Telegraph reports.
“It is tragic and we feel dreadful for the family to experience this,” she said.
In the past five years, Dr Sheppeard says, three babies have died from whooping cough — and all were unvaccinated.
More than 1500 infants in NSW have been diagnosed this year with whooping cough, which starts like a cold with a blocked or runny nose, a fever, coughing and sneezing. The serious respiratory infection can be life-threatening, and can also lead to pneumonia and brain damage, NSW Health reports.
Health experts say children who don’t receive a first vaccination at six weeks old — and follow-on injections at four and six months — are most at risk, according to The Daily Telegraph.
Immunisation rates among babies in NSW aged 1-2 remain lower than the national average, largely because of the efforts of vocal anti-vaxx groups like the Australian Vaccination Skeptics Network, which peddles lies and promotes dangerously misinformed hysteria about immunisation.
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