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  • Vaccination call after baby's cough death

    Author: AAP

The vaccination debate has been reignited following the death of a four-week-old baby in Perth from whooping cough.

Riley John Hughes died from the disease in Princess Margaret Hospital on Tuesday.

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His is the first death from whooping cough in Western Australia since 2011.

"We're desperate to ensure the passing of our child has not been in vain and to try and assist other families who may be potentially suffering from similar circumstances," Riley's father said on a Facebook page dedicated to Riley.

"Long term we'd ideally like to be the drivers of change within this country surrounding the treatment, management and long term eradication of this horrific disease."


The Department of Health says it does not know how the child contracted the respiratory disease, also known as pertussis.

Whooping cough is part of the routine vaccination schedule for babies at two months, four months and six months of age.

According to the department's notifiable disease report, there have been 244 cases of whooping cough in WA in the year to date, compared to 292 cases for the corresponding period last year and 232 cases in the first 10 weeks of 2013.


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