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This afternoon during the weekly COVID-19 update, Dr. Bonnie Henry addressed concerns pregnant people have about receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.
While Henry confirmed that clinical trials of the vaccine did not originally include pregnant people, there have been thousands of people who have received their COVID-19 vaccine while breastfeeding or pregnant over the past year.
Over 90,000 women have been vaccinated in the United States, and no major side effects have been identified. It has been determined that there are no increased risks for pregnant people, and they have the same mostly mild side effects as everyone else.
One of Canada’s leading experts, Dr. Deborah Money located right here in BC, is the lead researcher on the Canadian study on COVID-19 and pregnancy. Which is mainly focused on looking at the effects on vaccines and pregnant people.
It has been recommended by the national advisory committee in Canada, and other international groups that vaccines are safe for those peoples.
“There is no increased risk of complications after being immunized to you or your baby. There are no differences in miscarriage, preterm birth, stillbirths, or birth defects and international data supports this as well,” said Dr. Bonnie Henry.
Those who have not yet received their COVID-19 vaccine while pregnant are more likely to experience adverse effects.
“We do know that there is an increased risk of severe illness requiring hospitalization or ICU care if you get COVID-19 when you are pregnant."
“Canadian data including about 1500 pregnant people here in British Columbia and international data show significantly worse levels of severe disease especially now with the Delta variant and higher rates of adverse infant outcomes. Things like stillbirths and preterm births of babies being born early,” said Henry.
There has been a confirmed 40 pregnant people who have been in ICU over the course of the pandemic, with a majority of those cases happening in just the past few months.
In Canada and BC, pregnant people are highly recommended and prioritized to get their COVID-19 vaccine knowing that these risks can be averted and protect people through immunization.
“At any stage during pregnancy, it is safe and it is an important way to protect you and your baby,” said Henry.
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