Tower Hamlets PCT: Give pregnant women the whooping cough vaccine
Last week (1st October) following a government announcement, the NHS advised that all pregnant women were to be offered vaccination against whooping cough when they are 28-38 weeks pregnant.
Whooping cough is a serious illness. Babies who get it can develop severe complications such as pneumonia and brain damage. Most babies with whooping cough will need hospital treatment, and when whooping cough is very severe they may die.
I'm 38 weeks pregnant and two people at my work have been diagnosed with whopping cough so as soon I heard the news I went to my local doctor's surgery (Bethnal Green Health Centre) to get the vaccine.
But the surgery said they hadn't been given the authorisation to administer the vaccine by Tower Hamlets Primary Care Trust (PCT) so they weren't vaccinating anyone.
A week and several requests later, the surgery say they have been trying to get the authorisation for their nurses from the PCT but they still don't have it despite having the vaccinations ready and waiting. But every day that passes places myself and other women and unborn babies in potential danger.
I'm fast approaching the deadline for receiving the vaccine and don't understand why there's a delay from Tower Hamlets PCT that could threaten the health of women and children across the Borough.
I know of one other surgery in Tower Hamlets who have given out the vaccine and City & Hackney PCT is widely adminstering the vaccine so I want Tower Hamlets PCT to make sure all women have access to the vaccine.
Please join me in calling on Tower Hamlets PCT to grant authorisation for surgeries to adminster this life-saving vaccine.
For more information on the whopping cough vaccine see here:
The recommendation followed a sharp rise in the number of whooping cough cases in the UK.
A week later the Bethnal Green Health Centre has said they still haven't been given the information to administer the vaccine by Tower Hamlets Primary Care Trust (PCT) despite the practice manager contacting the PCT daily.
Other surgeries in Tower Hamlets have given out the vaccine and City & Hackney PCT is widely giving out the vaccine.
Why is there a delay from Tower Hamlets PCT? The vaccine is in the surgeries and there are pregnant women and unborn babies who could be protected but instead there is a delay that threatens the health of women and children across the Borough.
Bethnal Green Health Centre say the delay is purely administerial and they have the vaccinations ready and waiting, they just need the authorisation.
Tower Hamlets PCT please grant authorisation for surgeries to adminster this life-saving vaccine.