CDC says COVID-19 vaccination is safe and necessary for pregnant people; our Erica Manoatl shares her experience.
On Sept. 29, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued an urgent health advisory to increase COVID-19 vaccination among people who are pregnant, those trying to or who may become pregnant soon, and those who were recently pregnant and are now breastfeeding. This urgent call is intended to prevent the risk of serious illness, death, and adverse pregnancy outcomes from COVID-19 that have become evident over the past few months.
The benefits of vaccination for both pregnant people and their fetus outweigh known or potential risks. Currently, only 31% of pregnant people in the United States are vaccinated against COVID-19, despite evidence of the extremely heightened risk of serious illness and hospitalization for those who contract the virus while pregnant. Through Sept. 27, 125,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in pregnant people resulted in more than 22,000 hospitalizations and 161 deaths. The risk of death by symptomatic COVID-19 for pregnant people is 70% higher than that of non-pregnant individuals. The CDC also stresses that pregnant people with symptomatic COVID-19 face an increased risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes including preterm birth, stillbirth, and newborn infection of COVID-19 requiring ICU treatment.
To better contextualize the necessity of vaccination during pregnancy, our Manager of Research Initiatives, Erica Manoatl, offers her first-hand experience receiving the vaccine while pregnant. Erica shares her research process, her experiences in conversation with doctors, what specifically led to her decision to be vaccinated, and her health and wellness post-vaccine in the following interview.
Increasing vaccination rates among pregnant people, breastfeeding people, and the general population will play a significant role in combatting the extremely high risks COVID-19 poses to pregnant people and their babies. Vaccination also helps prevent the development of new and more dangerous COVID-19 variants that could impact us all. The following resources are useful in answering any questions you may have about COVID-19 vaccines:
- Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment
- US Department of Health and Human Services
- It’s up to you campaign: www.GetVaccineAnswers.org
- www.DeTiDepende.org (For Spanish speakers)
- Immunize Colorado
- Colorado Vaccine Equity Task Force: www.vaccineequity.org , https://www.equidadvacunacolorado.org/