I did not vaccinate 2 of my 3 children. If there was a severe outbreak of pertussis that co-incided with a newborn period, I would cocoon (check my titres, and vax myself if necessary) and the babe would stay close to home. I am blessed that I can do this. If I had to work and the babe had to go to daycare, ride public transport, etc…I would vaccinate the baby in the event of a severe outbreak. 1/100 is too scary for me.
Even though as I mentioned the stat is not 1/100 in this day and age, there is still enough morbidity and mortality associated with infantile pertussis that I totally agree with Kathy. I did not vaccinate my toddler and will not be vaccinating my newborn (coming in a few months) but that is because I will be cocooning (modified) and will be able to do so. If I had to put her in daycare, or I lived in a large urban area, or had other risk factors for pertussis exposure, I truly feel that in this case the risks of the vax would not outweigh the benefits and I would do the vaccine, flawed as it may be. I am privileged that I am able to feel comfortable with the decision (and what I see to be a reasonably low risk for our family) to not vaccinate a newborn for pertussis during an epidemic.