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Lockdown ending can put pregnant women at high risk of developing severe Covid – warn experts

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Health experts and pregnant women are concerned that the easing of Covid restrictions scheduled for next week may result in a rise in infections among pregnant women.

Pregnant women, according to the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) and the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), are at a higher risk of becoming seriously sick with Covid.

As a result, doctors are requesting women to receive the Covid vaccination “to protect yourself, your baby and your family.”

Evidence indicates that during pregnancy, Covid jab is safe.

The danger of becoming extremely sick with Covid increases in the late stages of pregnancy, due in part to the developing foetus’s strain on the lungs.

Mothers who give birth during infection will more likely require a Caesarean emergency and have a greater death risk, although the actual increases remain low.

According to the RCOG, 58 percent of pregnant women have rejected the Covid vaccination.

It recognized that “mixed messages” regarding the vaccine’s safety at the outset of the programme had created uncertainty – but it was disappointing that the government and NHS England had not conducted more direct advertising aimed at pregnant women after immunisation was authorised for the group in April.

The RCOG told BBC that pregnant women were the only clinically vulnerable group not prioritised for vaccination.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) now recommends that pregnant women be given the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines, if they are available, at the same time as the rest of the population.

A study involving over 90,000 pregnant women in the United States showed no danger, and doctors say there is no reason to believe there is an increased risk of miscarriage since the vaccination does not seem to pass from mother to child through the placenta.

Both colleges are encouraging pregnant or planning to become pregnant women who have not yet been vaccinated to do so as soon as feasible and to schedule their second doses as soon as they are eligible.

Unvaccinated or partly vaccinated pregnant women should continue to exercise social distance to prevent infection, especially in their third trimester, they advise.

Dr Edward Morris, RCOG president, said:

We are concerned that increasing rates of Covid infection will adversely impact pregnant women.

We know that those who are pregnant with Covid are at an increased risk of becoming severely ill, and the vaccine is the safest and most effective way of protecting women and their babies.

Gill Walton, RCM chief executive, said:

Along with mask wearing, hand washing and social distancing, vaccination is a vital tool in the fight to protect yourself against this virus.

If you are unsure or worried about this, do speak to your midwife or doctor to get the facts so that you can make an informed decision.

All the evidence is showing that having the Covid jab is safe during pregnancy, and I do urge you to have the vaccine to protect yourself, your baby and your family.

Photo by Gerardo Vieyra/NurPhoto via Getty Images

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