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Protecting baby begins at pregnancy

This year's Immunisation week theme is Protecting baby begins at pregnancy. The week long campaign (2-9 May) promotes the benefits of immunisation during pregnancy.

Expectant mums are encouraged to be immunised against whooping cough and influenza during pregnancy, registered with a midwife and GP early on, and ensure baby continues to be immunised.

Although immunisation rates in New Zealand have improved over the past decade there is still a minority of children who remain unimmunised. These children are at greater risk of catching a life-threatening disease such as whooping cough.

Whooping cough can cause babies to become seriously ill, in some cases it can be deadly. Immunisation during pregnancy protects nine out of 10 babies against whooping cough in their first weeks of life, until they are fully immunised.

While the focus is on mothers giving baby the best start, it is also important to remember young people should be kept up to date with their immunisations.

For more information contact your GP or visit https://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/healthy-living/immunisation