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Unvaccinated Pregnant Women and their Babies face Covid Risk

Pregnant women who had not been vaccinated against Covid-19 and caught the disease were much more likely to suffer severe complications — for themselves and their infants — than those who had been vaccinated and caught Covid, according to a study that looked at health data from the entire population of Scotland. Despite the mounting evidence, immunisation rates among pregnant women remain significantly lower than those in the overall population.

This information should be shared with partners, parents, grandparents, and friends so that everyone understands that vaccination during pregnancy is the safest and most effective way for pregnant women to protect themselves and their newborns. Data on every recognised pregnancy in Scotland between March 2020 and October 2021 — 145,424 conceptions — as well as data on PCR test results and immunizations — were examined by scientists from Scotland’s public health service and the University of Edinburgh.

The findings have been published in Nature Medicine. There were 4,950 confirmed infections in pregnant women in Scotland between December 2020 and October 2021, when it became increasingly common to test for Covid during maternity care. Unvaccinated women accounted for over 90% of Covid infections linked to hospitalisation, and 98.1 percent of the 104 women who ended up in critical care were unvaccinated.

Perinatal deaths, or infant deaths in the later stages of pregnancy or immediately after birth, were substantially greater among women who got Covid while pregnant than in the overall population, with 22.6 deaths per 1,000 births compared to 5.6 deaths per 1,000 births in the general population. The study also found that all of the foetal deaths caused by infection occurred in women who had not been vaccinated. For mothers who had received  vaccinations, the rate of perinatal death remained around normal.

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