AHS Important Information

AHS Important Information




As many of you are aware, Alberta Health Services (AHS) is managing an ongoing outbreak of pertussis in the South Zone of AHS.


We have been encouraging all South Zone residents to ensure that they, and their children, are up-to-date on all recommended immunizations for their age(s), including immunization that protects against pertussis. 


Although most pertussis cases in the South Zone outbreak have occurred in unimmunized individuals, our ongoing review of outbreak case data has shown a number of cases of breakthrough pertussis illness in children aged 11 and 12, who are otherwise considered up-to-date on their immunizations.  Breakthrough illness/disease is pertussis illness that breaks through the armour of immunization, in children who are otherwise properly immunized for age.


To reduce the risk of further breakthrough illness in these children, we taking the step of offering a limited-time booster dose of pertussis immunization to all children aged 10, 11 and 12, living or attending school in the South Zone of AHS. 


Booster dose clinics will begin the week of August 21, and offer pertussis-containing vaccine to the children in the above-noted age and geographic range (free of charge) for a limited time only.


We will begin communicating these clinics to the public on August 14 and would sincerely appreciate your support in helping us get that message out.  We’ve included a brief message (see attached) that you could place on your school website, or use in any other communication you have planned for August 14 or later.


We understand that this may be a difficult time for you to communicate with your school populations, given the summer break period, but appreciate your continued support in helping us communicate this message.




Should you have any questions about the booster clinics, we encourage you to visit, where we will post additional information on August 14.


If you have further questions, please call 403-388-6007.


Thank you for your attention to this important health issue.




Vivien Suttorp, MD, MPH, CCFP, FCFP

Lead Medical Officer of Health                 

Alberta Health Services – South Zone


Karin Goodison, MD, MPH, FRCPC

Medical Officer of Health

Alberta Health Services – South Zone


Lena Derie-Gillespie, BSW, MD, CCFP, MPH

Medical Officer of Health

Alberta Health Services – South Zone

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