Stating that whooping cough is still prevalent in New South Wales, Health Minister Jillian Skinner announced that the New South Wales government will extend free vaccines for whooping cough until the end of this year.
More than 20,000 cases of whooping cough were registered during 2008 and 2009 while last year the number dropped to 9,000 with more than 4,000 cases registered so far this year.
Mrs Skinner said that the vaccine will be available for free for new parents or grandparents of children under 12 months of age.
New South Wales chief health officer, Dr Kerry Chant said that it is important for infants to be vaccinated against the disease. "Infants may not develop sufficient pertussis protection until the three-dose course of whooping cough vaccine is completed after six months of age", Dr Chant added.