7 Apr 2012

Cases of whooping cough dropping in Wellington

1:50 pm on 7 April 2012

Public health services in Wellington say the number of cases of whooping cough in the region has dropped.

An outbreak of the disease began six months ago with cases peaking in November at 150, the highest number since 1997.

In the past two weeks in the Wairarapa, Kapiti Coast, Hutt Valley and Wellington area, there has been 36 people diagnosed with the infection, also known as pertussis.

A Medical Officer of Health for the Wellington Region Public Health Service, Annette Nesdale, says although there are fewer cases now, the number is still quite high.

She says between last October and the end of March 527 cases of whooping cough were recorded, between six to eight times higher than the previous year.

Dr Nesdale says both adults and children can catch whooping cough, and she is urging people to be immunised.