Saving baby: it’s ok for pregnant women to get vaxxed

There are “far too many” unvaccinated expectant mums in hospital with Covid.

The comment comes from New Zealand researchers Leah Pointon, Anna Howe, Matthew Hobbs, Janine Paynter, Natalie Gauld, Nikki Turner and Esther Willing have been looking into vaccination coverage in pregnant New Zealand women.

Pregnant women can still get vaxxed: it’s about saving your life and saving baby, they say.

There are no safety concerns for vaccination during pregnancy.

Indeed the opposite applies, pregnancy puts women at great risk of disease making vaccination even more important for both mother and baby say the Immunisation Advisory Centre (IMAC) .

Research findings

New Zealand IMAC research into vaccination coverage in pregnant New Zealand women found that, between 2013 and 2018, maternal vaccination coverage increased for pertussis and influenza; coverage remains suboptimal and existing ethnic and deprivation inequities increased.

There is an urgent need to focus on equity, and to engage and support ethnic communities by creating genuinely accessible, culturally appropriate health services.

Physical access to a GP has little effect on increasing maternal coverage. This is despite GPs being the almost exclusive providers of maternal pertussis vaccinations and the lead provider of maternal influenza vaccination.

Using the Covid-19 vaccination programme’s novel solutions to vaccinate hard-to-reach populations could help inform a more responsive, equitable service for maternal vaccinations.

There is evidence of suboptimal maternal vaccination coverage in pregnant New Zealand women and increasing inequity over time.

Further information about the nationwide retrospective cohort study has been published this month in Vaccine, Elsevier’s vaccinology journal.


Additional reading

News category: New Zealand.

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