Over the past 3 years there have been a large number of outbreaks of pertussis in Australia. In 2011 37,880 cases were reported, an increase of more than 3000 from those reported in 2010. In 2011 most cases have occurred in four states:New South Wales(12,930),Queensland(8,819),Victoria(8,568) andWestern Australia(3,763). . The Western Australian Health Authority is warning that the state may be facing an epidemic.
What is whooping cough?
Whooping cough is a highly infectious disease caused by the bacterium Bordetella Pertussis. Transmission is through the respiratory route and symptoms include: severe coughing spells, breathing difficulties, vomiting and sleep disturbance.
Sussex Travel Clinic has been having some enquiries from concerned travellers who are concerned either because of risk of contracting pertussis themselves or because, if infected, they may put young children at risk. (e.g. grandparents visiting new grandchildren who are not yet vaccinated)
In the UK children under the age of 10 are routinely immunised against pertussis. Adults and those over the age of 10 are not routinely offered boosters, although some countries, Australia included, do offer a booster dose to adolescence as part of their immunisation programme.
Immunity following infection or vaccination against pertussis wanes over time and there is no test to check immunity.
Advice for Travellers
To discuss this further please call our nurses on 01273 749100.
Sussex Travel Clinic carried out our annual client survey during February 2012.
Here are the results.
Over a 2 week period 68% of all clients seen completed a survey form.
100% of our clients would recommend our service to a friend.
87% rated the expertise of our staff as excellent.
86% rated the overall service as excellent.
What can we do to improve our service?
1 client said they found it difficult to get through on the telephone.
Our phones lines are answered during the following times: Monday to Friday 9 am till 5 pm and till 7 pm on a Monday and Thursday, 10 – 1 pm on a Saturday. Unfortunately, during our busy periods it may be difficult to get through. To address this Sussex Travel Clinic now offers an online booking service and hopes that this will reduce the amount of call volume through the clinic.
‘ Very efficient staff, no complaints’
‘ Very kind and helpful staff’
‘ Very polite and helpful staff’
‘ Your service has been extremely useful and supportive re: my travel plans and queries. I cannot think of any improvements’