Study favours pertussis vax in pregnancy

A US modelling study has found immunisation during pregnancy would prevent significantly more infant deaths. The research used birth data to simulate effectiveness of pertussis vaccination and showed pregnancy vaccination could reduce annual infant deaths by 49% compared with 16% for postpartum vaccination.

Hospitalisations were predicted to be reduced by 38% when vaccination occurred in pregnancy compared to 19% postpartum, and annual cases by 33% and 20%, respectively.

Professor Peter McIntyre, director of the National Centre for Immunisation