Midwives and doctors in North East Lincolnshire are strongly recommending all pregnant women have their COVID vaccination. Having both doses of the vaccination offers the best protection against COVID.
Catching COVID can cause problems with pregnancy. Women with COVID are 2 to 3 times more likely to have their babies early than women without COVID. There is also an increased risk of a condition called pre-eclampsia which causes high blood pressure.
While most pregnant women will fortunately only have mild cold/flu symptoms, COVID also causes some people to become very poorly. Pregnant women with COVID are more likely to need to go into hospital for treatment or even need to be admitted to Intensive Care than women with COVID who are not pregnant.
The COVID vaccination can be safely given during pregnancy and when breastfeeding and local doctors and midwives are urging women to take action to protect themselves and their bump.
“We know these are very worrying times for parents who are expecting a child,” said Dr Marcia Pathak, local GP in Grimsby and clinical lead for women and children with NHS North East Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group. “If you have concerns about having the vaccination, please talk to your midwife or GP about it.
“There is no evidence at all that the vaccine can harm your pregnancy. However, catching COVID can cause serious problems, including premature birth. It also makes some pregnant women extremely ill, especially those over 28 weeks pregnant.”
Diane Halton, public health consultant in North East Lincolnshire, also reminded people that there is still a lot of COVID about locally. “While we are not seeing cases rise quickly like we were a couple of weeks ago, a lot of people are still testing positive in North East Lincolnshire and sadly, some are still becoming very poorly. This includes some pregnant women.”
“If you are expecting a baby, it’s particularly important to protect yourself and your unborn child from COVID.”
Steps to help avoid catching COVID-19:
• Get both your vaccinations
• Meet outside or open windows and doors for indoor visitors
• wear a face covering in crowded places and on public transport
• wash your hands with soap regularly and for at least 20 seconds
• Ask people you live with to stay cautious and follow the above
You can find out more about the COVID vaccination and pregnancy by visiting COVID-19 vaccination: a guide for all women of childbearing age, pregnant or breastfeeding – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).
To book a jab visit www.nhs.uk/coronavirus-vaccination or ring 119.