As of late there have been four confirmed cases of whooping cough. Three have been in the north west and the other has been in the northern interior of the province and there is concern of individuals having close contact with the cases.
The condition starts as a common cold and progresses into a cough. The then can become more severe and may or may not have the whooping sound associated with it. This may be accompanied by gasping, gagging, shortness of breath, vomiting and pneumonia.
Women who are pregnant are at risk if they happen to be in the final three months as the virus can cause serious disease and complications to the fetus.
The vaccine for whooping cough is part of normal child vaccines given at two, four, six, and eighteen months, and again at four to six years old. A vaccine is also given to teens between the ages of 14 to 16 years old, and adults are also able to get protection from the virus.
Citizens are advised to contact their health units and protect themselves against whooping cough.