Immunise Australia Program
Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing
Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing. Immunise Australia Program. Information Line 1800 671 811
Immunise Australia Program. Information Line 1800 671 811

Whooping Cough brochure

PDF printable version of Whooping Cough brochure (PDF 850 KB)

1 IDENTIFY the disease
2 PROTECT your child
3 PREVENT the spread


What is whooping cough?

What are the symptoms?

How is whooping cough spread?

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Protect your baby

Older children


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How can I prevent the spread of whooping cough?

Dana’s story

Baby Dana was born a happy, healthy girl. She was breastfeeding well and putting on weight.

At 11 days old, she developed a blocked nose and was unsettled at night. Dana’s parents acted quickly and saw the GP. When she was three weeks old, Dana developed an occasional cough and appeared to gag, and her parents returned to the GP. As soon as Dana tested positive for whooping cough, she went straight to hospital.

Soon after arriving, Dana had her first coughing bout where she turned blue and needed oxygen. On the third day at hospital, Dana developed pneumonia and she was placed on a ventilator. She was transferred to intensive care.

On the fifth day, the whooping cough toxins caused her organs to shut down and Dana had a cardiac arrest. She was only 32 days old when she died.

Nobody knows where Dana was infected with whooping cough. It may have been at her sibling’s school or preschool. A loving relative or friend, or a complete stranger may have unknowingly passed the infection on.

Whooping cough affects people of all ages, but the real danger of the devastating disease is on young babies like Dana.

That’s why it’s up to everyone to Identify, Protect, Prevent.

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Where do I go for further information?

Australian Capital Territory
ACT Immunisation Inquiry Line
(02) 6205 2300

New South Wales
Contact the local Public Health Units (look under ‘Health’ in the White Pages)

Northern Territory
(08) 8922 8044

Contact the local Public Health Units (look under ‘Health’ in the White Pages)
or 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84) 24 hour health hotline

South Australia
South Australia Immunisation Section
1300 232 272

SA (24-hour) Parent Help-line (Child and Youth Health) 1300 364 100

1800 671 738

1300 882 008

Western Australia
(08) 9321 1312


National Centre for Immunisation Research & Surveillance

Immunise Australia Program
(Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing)

This material is reproduced by the Department of Health and Ageing under arrangement with the NSW Ministry of Health.
All information in this document is correct as at July 2012.

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Page last modified: August, 2011