Pregnant People Urged To Get COVID Vaccine

by Kristine Cannon
Originally Published: 
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Two leading ob-gyn organizations advise pregnant people get vaccinated against COVID-19

As the Delta variant of COVID-19 continues to spread, with the CDC calling it as contagious as chickenpox, two ob-gyn organizations are recommending that pregnant people get vaccinated. This recommendation follows months of studies on how the COVID vaccines have affected pregnant people, with one of the latest suggesting that the vaccines have no impact on pregnancy or fertility.

“ACOG encourages its members to enthusiastically recommend vaccination to their patients. This means emphasizing the known safety of the vaccines and the increased risk of severe complications associated with COVID-19 infection, including death, during pregnancy,” says Dr. J. Martin Tucker, president of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), an organization that represents more than 60,000 ob-gyns.

ACOG is one of two leading organizations representing specialists in obstetric care that recommended on Friday that anyone who is pregnant should be vaccinated against COVID-19.

According to ACOG’s press release, ACOG and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM) based their recommendation on evidence from tens of thousands of pregnant people that the vaccines are safe to be used during pregnancy. ACOG also cited low vaccination rates and the recent increase in cases.

ACOG and the CDC reports that only about 22 percent of pregnant people have received one or more doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. And with recent data showing more than 95 percent of those hospitalized or dying from COVID as unvaccinated, ACOG and SMFM encourage pregnant people get vaccinated as soon as possible.

“It is clear that pregnant people need to feel confident in the decision to choose vaccination, and a strong recommendation from their obstetrician–gynecologist could make a meaningful difference for many pregnant people,” Tucker says, adding,

“ACOG is recommending vaccination of pregnant individuals because we have evidence of the safe and effective use of the vaccine during pregnancy from many tens of thousands of reporting individuals, because we know that COVID-19 infection puts pregnant people at increased risk of severe complications, and because it is clear from the current vaccination rates that people need to feel confident in the safety and protective value of the COVID-19 vaccines. Pregnant individuals should feel confident that choosing COVID-19 vaccination not only protects them but also protects their families and communities.”

According to ACOG, pregnant individuals who have decided to wait until after delivery to be vaccinated may be inadvertently exposing themselves to an increased risk of severe illness or death. Those who have recently delivered and were not vaccinated during pregnancy are also strongly encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

COVID-19 vaccination is the best method to reduce maternal and fetal complications of COVID-19 infection among pregnant people,” says William Grobman, MD, MBA, president of SMFM.

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