Information about how you can protect your children and staff from whooping cough.
|Level of compliance||Main audience||Other|
If whooping cough is present in an early learning service, that service should take action to ensure that children and staff are safe.
- Getting vaccinated
- Identifying whooping cough
- How whooping couch spreads
- If a child or staff member has whooping cough
- Further information
Vaccinations are the best form of protection from whooping cough.
- Education providers can ask parents to get their children vaccinated.
- Vaccination is free for all children.
- To find out how to get the vaccination, go to the Immunisation Advisory Centre website(external link), or call 0800 466 863.
Identifying whooping cough
Both adults and children can get whooping cough.
- Whooping cough usually starts with a runny nose and an annoying cough, often lasting for around two weeks.
- Symptoms develop into violent coughing, which may have a 'whooping' sound and end with vomiting.
A person can have the illness for a long time. Whooping cough is also known as the '100-day cough' because of the extended length of the illness.
How whooping cough spreads
When a carrier of whooping cough coughs or sneezes, they spread the fluid through the air and onto surfaces, which can contaminate others who come into contact with it.
Someone with whooping cough can be infectious from the early stages of infection, when they may have a runny nose, right through to three weeks after they experience fits of coughing.
If a child or staff member has whooping cough
If you suspect that a child has whooping cough, you can insist that the parents take them to a doctor. They should return to your ECE service or kōhanga reo only after they have been cleared by the doctor.
Any staff with a persistent cough should see their doctor and stay away from the ECE service or kōhanga reo until the doctor is sure that they do not have whooping cough.
- See additional information: Communicable diseases in early learning services and schools
Last reviewed: Has this been useful? Give us your feedback