PETALING JAYA: Providing Tetanus, Diphtheria and Acellular Pertussis (TDAP) vaccines to pregnant women nationwide will allow the country to have better control over the spread of Pertussis, otherwise known as the whooping cough, says Datuk Dr Zulkifli Ismail.
The Immunise4Life programme technical committee chairman said providing the vaccines, especially to undocumented children and individuals in Sabah, will be beneficial, noting how a third of the current reported cases was from there.
“Providing TDAP vaccines to pregnant women at 27 to 36 weeks of pregnancy offers immunity to the baby at birth, and before they receive their first diphtheria, tetanus and acellular pertussis (DTap) vaccination.
“This will reduce the risk of infection to those below five months old,” said the consultant paeditrician.
The DTap vaccine that is given to children aged two, three to five months with a booster at 18 months will prevent pertussis for a limited period of between six and 16 years, Dr Zulkifli explained.
“Adult vaccination with the TDAP vaccine is needed to continue that immunity. The current hexavalent pertussis-containing vaccines are effective in preventing infection in children.
“The TDAP vaccines are effective in adults and need a single dose only,” he said.
Source: TheStar | 26 August 2023