Mum Urges Pregnant Women To Get Whooping Cough Vaccine After Passing It On To Her Daughter

'If I could turn back time, I would have protected myself.'

'If I could turn back time I would protect myself.' Cormit's baby has contracted Whooping Cough. Watch this clip to hear the first-time mum bravely talk about her decision to opt out of vaccination during pregnancy and how hard it is now coping with her new baby being so unwell. For the facts on Immunisation go to #vaccinationmatters #immunisation #preventabledisease #GoldCoast #publichealth

Posted by Gold Coast Health on Monday, 4 April 2016

A mother who passed whooping cough on to her newborn after catching it in the final two weeks of her pregnancy has sent an urgent warning to mums-to-be.

The mum, known only as Cormit, was offered a vaccination against the condition when she was 28 weeks pregnant, but she refused it because she was "healthy, fit and organic".

Sharing a video on Gold Coast Health's Facebook page, the Australian mother explained she had spent the past three weeks in hospital with her daughter Eva.

"Eva was diagnosed with whopping cough and it's been a nightmare," she explained.

"It's a lot of suffering for a baby you love so much."


Whooping cough (pertussis) is a highly contagious bacterial infection of the lungs and airways.

The condition usually begins with a persistent dry and irritating cough that progresses to intense bouts of coughing.

The gasping for breath after one of these coughing bouts causes a distinctive "whooping" noise, which is how the condition gets its name.

Cormit, who is a first-time mother, said she had a very healthy pregnancy with no complications.

"I worked out, I went to the gym, ate healthy and had a natural birth," she explained.

"But through the process, in the last two weeks I got whooping cough.

"I don't know why or how. I gave birth and I was coughing, I went to check myself because it was annoying and uncomfortable."

Cormit said after going to the hospital, she learned she had whooping cough and had passed it on to her daughter.

She said the first few days weren't too bad for Eva, but within two weeks the cough became "pretty scary".

"Eva was coughing to the point of going blue and flopping in my hands," she said.

"We were in and out of hospital and at one point she stopped breathing for three minutes.

"We were in intensive care with just a baby that coughs and coughs.

"It's so hard to watch, they go red and blue and sometimes even black."

Cormit explained why she had refused the vaccination.

"Being the fit, healthy and organic women I am, I said: 'Leave me alone, I don't need this crap'.

"Even me, the bullet proof lady who has never been to the doctors, got whooping cough.

"If I could turn back time I would have protected myself."

The video, posted on Monday 4 April, was viewed more than 150,000 times in one day.

The post, that has been shared more than 3,300 times, has attracted a lot of attention from parents tagging their friends to raise awareness.

"Wow. What a brave woman and so pleased she can turn this into a positive in trying to help others get the message that she was not willing to listen to," one person commented on the video.

"Hopefully it will make some people think twice before saying 'no' to the vaccination."

The post has also resonated with mums-to-be who were unsure whether to get vaccinated.

"I am hoping to get pregnant soon and was unsure about vaccinations during pregnancy," one person wrote.

"You have helped me make up my mind. Thank you. I hope your baby recovers really fast and am sending strength and love.

"You've at least reached one person (me) so sharing your story was important."

The NHS states pregnant women can protect their babies by getting vaccinated – ideally at 20 weeks, after the foetal scan, but as late as 32 weeks pregnant.

The pertussis-containing vaccine for whooping cough has been used routinely in pregnant women in the UK since October 2012.

I have no morning sickness! Is that bad news?

Pregnancy worries and words of comfort

Before You Go