Whooping cough outbreak in the Dehcho

Whooping cough can be prevented by vaccine. (Supplied by Pexels.)
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An outbreak of whooping cough has been detected in two communities in the Dehcho region.

There are seven confirmed cases in total in Jean Marie River and Fort Simpson.

These numbers include the four cases that were reported in Fort Simpson.

The disease is preventable with a vaccine, and is part of the NWT’s regular vaccination schedule.

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Whooping cough leads to mild symptoms for seven to ten days. After that period, the disease causes severe coughing, punctuated by a whooping sound as an infected individual takes a breath in between bouts of coughing.

Antibiotics can reduce the severeness of the symptoms, but they can last for several months, according to the GNWT.

The disease can be particularly harmful for infants, most dangerous for children under the age of 1 year.

Anyone with the disease is encouraged to avoid contact with infants and large crowds. Pregnant people are encouraged to get a booster dose of the whooping cough vaccine 27 to 32 weeks after their pregnancy begins, in order to protect the child from whooping cough.

Anyone who comes into contact with someone with whooping cough is encouraged to contact their local public health centre, according to a statement from the Department of Health and Social Services.

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