Whooping cough (pertussis) and Influenza (flu)

Pertussis, commonly known as ‘whooping cough’ is a highly infectious bacterial infection spread by coughing and sneezing. Whooping cough is common in New Zealand. We have an outbreak of the disease every three to five years. The most recent outbreak began in August 2011 and is still ongoing. Since the outbreak began, more than 6700 cases (until December 2012) of whooping cough have been reported. Click here for further information.

Experience from previous seasonal influenza outbreaks including the 2009/2010 pandemic showed that pregnant women are at greater risk from complications associated with influenza. Flu in pregnancy has been associated with an increased risk of hospitalisation and other illnesses. The best protection is to get the flu vaccination to protect yourself and your baby. Click here for further information.

Pregnant women in Northland can get free whooping cough and flu vaccinations to help them and their babies to avoid catching these illnesses. If you want to discuss this further talk to your midwife or GP.


To make an appointment that suits you please phone your local maternity unit:

  • Whangarei, 09 4304101 ext 8600;
  • Bay of Islands, 09 4040280 ext 5831 or 5833;
  • Dargaville, 0800 374628 or 09 439 3330 ext 6864 or 6865;
  • Kaitaia 09 4089180 ext 4864 and
  • Rawene 09 4057709

You can also get free whooping cough and flu vaccinations through your GP or local doctor

Flu vaccination is provided FREE for adults and children with long-term health conditions and people aged 65 years and older. For further information contact your GP/local doctor or click here.

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