Ask Sofia: Should pregnant women get the Covid-19 vaccine?
This is the number-one question our patients who are pregnant or are hoping to get pregnant are asking right now: Should I get the Covid-19 vaccine?
Since clinical trials typically exclude pregnant women as well as those who are breastfeeding, there was limited data on this topic. However, three of the leading health organizations agree that pregnant women may receive the Covid-19 vaccination safely. The World Health Organization says, “based on what we know about this kind of vaccine, we don’t have any specific reason to believe there will be specific risks that would outweigh the benefits of vaccination for pregnant women.”
Further, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends urgent action to increase COVID-19 vaccination among people who are pregnant, recently pregnant (including those who are lactating), who are trying to become pregnant now, or who might become pregnant in the future. CDC strongly recommends COVID-19 vaccination either before or during pregnancy because the benefits of vaccination outweigh known or potential risks.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM), the two leading organizations representing specialists in obstetric care, recommend that all pregnant individuals be vaccinated against COVID-19. The organizations’ recommendations in support of vaccination during pregnancy reflect evidence demonstrating the safe use of the COVID-19 vaccines during pregnancy from tens of thousands of reporting individuals over the last several months, as well as the current low vaccination rates and concerning increase in cases.
“Because the vaccine is the best way of preventing coronavirus, we are recommending that all of our patients, including those who are pregnant, get the vaccination as soon as they are eligible,” said Dr. Pamela Jordi. “We know that some patients may have concerns, but we encourage them to have a discussion with their care team to ask questions and get more information.”
Jordi adds that many pregnant healthcare providers and front-line workers are choosing to become vaccinated based on the known risks of Covid-19 to pregnant women—who have a higher chance of severe illness—versus the theoretical risks of the vaccine. Pregnant women who receive the vaccine are still encouraged to wear masks in public, practice social distancing, avoid crowds and maintain good hand-washing hygiene.
More to come
We know the COVID vaccination is top of mind among all of our patients so that’s why will continue the discussion next month. If you have specific questions you’d like to ask, please send an email to email@example.com or through our patient portal.