HEALTH professionals from NHS England are urging pregnant women in Swindon to get vaccinated against whooping cough.

This will protect their new baby during its first months from whooping cough, by passing on immunity from mother to child. Young babies are particularly at risk and can’t be vaccinated until two months of age.

On average, six out of 10 pregnant women living across Swindon are already vaccinated.

NHS England is keen to encourage the other 40 per cent of expectant mothers to protect their babies from whooping cough.

Dr Ardiana Gjini, NHS England Screening and Immunisation Lead for BaNES, Gloucestershire, Swindon and Wiltshire, said: “Whooping cough is a serious disease and can lead to pneumonia, brain damage and even death.

“The best time to get vaccinated to protect your new-born baby is from week 28 to week 32, but vaccination is possible up to 38 weeks of pregnancy.

“Talk to your midwife or GP and make an appointment to get vaccinated.”