Whooping cough outbreak in Kivalliq region

Press Release

The Department of Health advises Nunavummiut, especially parents of babies and young children, that there is an outbreak of whooping cough (pertussis) in the Kivalliq region, with active cases in Arviat and Rankin Inlet. Anyone can get whooping cough, but the most severe cases are in children under the age of one. Communities in the region are encouraged to stay aware as early diagnosis and treatment are important.

Whooping cough is a disease of the throat and lungs that is spread very easily from person to person. If you or your child are mildly ill, stay home and avoid contact with others until your symptoms are gone. This will prevent the spread of illness.

Call your health centre if anyone in your household has any of these symptoms:

  • A cough that lasts longer than a week.
  • A cough followed by an unusual sound that sounds like “whoop”.
  • Trouble breathing.
  • Vomiting after coughing.
  • Coughing that is worse at night.
  • A high fever (39°C and above) that lasts more than three days.

You can prevent whooping cough by getting vaccinated. People should check that their vaccines are up to date. Precautions include:

  • Frequent handwashing.
  • Coughing into your sleeve or tissue.
  • Not sharing food, drinks, utensils or toothbrushes.

Learn more about whooping cough by reading the pertussis factsheet available on the Department of Health webpage.


Pierre Essoh
Communications Specialist
Department of Health


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