By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

The South Africa  National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) is reporting an increase in pertussis cases among children younger than five years of age, particularly among infants younger than three months of age. The current increases have mostly been reported in the Western Cape Province.

Image/CDC

From January to November 2022, 408 cases of pertussis were reported to the NMC of which 374/408 (91,7%) have been reported since July 2022. More than half the cases, 56.4% (230/408), were reported from Western Cape Province. The majority 67.2% (274/408) of cases reported were reported in
children <5 years of age, of which 69.7% (191/274) were children aged <3 months.

Pertussis, commonly known as ‘whooping cough’, is a vaccine-preventable disease caused by Bordetella pertussis and is a notifiable medical condition (NMC). Immunity following vaccination lasts for approximately 5-6 years. Episodic increases in pertussis cases occur in vaccinated populations every 3-5 years. Completion of childhood primary series (DTaP) and boosters is important for prevention.