For All Pregnant Women
The Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices from the Centers for Disease Control recommend that health care providers immunize all pregnant women against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (whooping cough.) The recommendation is to administer the Tdap vaccine between 27-36 weeks of gestation or, if that’s not possible, immediately after childbirth, regardless of whether or not the mother has had the vaccine in the past. The committee says the vaccine is safe and can be administered at any time during pregnancy. Experts say getting the vaccine during pregnancy enables pertussis antibodies to be transferred from the mother to the newborn. The CDC reports a jump in the number of pertussis cases with more than 32,000 cases and 16 deaths reported this year, the largest number since 1959.