The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has revisited its stand on pregnant women getting jabbed and receiving a vaccine against COVID-19, all thanks to a new study. In a move that is bound to answer any queries and ease awaiting mothers in the wake of the flood in Delta variant outbreaks, the CDC now officially recommends vaccination for pregnant women, reports The Washington Post. The agency has cited a study and stated that upon analysis of the V-safe pregnancy registry database, it did not find an increased risk for miscarriage among people who received the mRNA vaccine before 20 weeks of pregnancy. Instead, the miscarriage rates after vaccination were similar to the expected rate. There were also no safety concerns among vaccinated people late in pregnancy, both for themselves and their babies.
Earlier, the CDC was vague in its recommendation and had said while pregnant women can take COVID-19 vaccination, they should consult their healthcare providers beforehand. And now, in their updated stance, it suggests that while such a conversation might be helpful, it is not required before vaccination. And pregnant people can receive the COVID-19 vaccine without any additional documentation from their healthcare provider. The new statement reads, “COVID-19 vaccination is recommended for all people 12 years and older, including people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to get pregnant now, or might become pregnant in the future.”
“Data support the safety and effectiveness of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine during pregnancy. These data suggest that the benefits of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine outweigh any known or potential risks.” Reportedly, women can receive vaccines with emergency authorization like Pfizer or Moderna. And even the one-shot Johnson & Johnson has not been studied as much as the other two vaccines.
If you’re not in the know, pregnant and recently pregnant people are at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 compared with non-pregnant people. Women who are awaiting are at a heightened risk of getting severely ill from the virus that requires hospitalization, intensive care, and even adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as preterm birth. The CDC guideline also stated that “At present no evidence that any vaccines, including COVID-19 vaccines, create fertility problems in women or men.”
According to Sascha Ellington, team lead for the Emergency Preparedness and Response team in CDC’s Reproductive Health, only 23% of pregnant women receive at least one vaccine dose. She was quoted by Times Of India said, “We want to increase that. We want women to be protected. We’re not seeing any safety signals and so the benefits of vaccination really do outweigh any potential or unknown risks.”
The lead also revealed that the CDC wants to bring obstetricians and gynecologists aboard as vaccine providers, among other strategies. “We are aware of the myths that have been spreading related to fertility. They are not based on any evidence. There’s no science that backs that up. We hope this helps,” Ellington added.
The recommendation comes after the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM) vouched for vaccines for pregnant people in July. And hopefully, it will see increased vaccination among expecting mothers around the world.