Based on recommendations from National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI), the Union Ministry of Health and family Welfare (MoHFW) on Friday approved the vaccination of pregnant women against COVID-19. The decision has been communicated to all the States/ UTs to implement it under the ongoing national COVID vaccination program, a press release by Union Health Ministry stated.
According to the release, beneficiaries can now register on CoWIN or walk-in to the nearest COVID vaccination centre (CVC) to get themselves vaccinated.
On the side effects of the Covid vaccines, the government factsheet had stated that the vaccines available are safe and vaccination protects pregnant women against Covid-19 illness/disease like other individuals.
"Studies have shown that COVID-19 infection during pregnancy may result in rapid deterioration of health of pregnant women and they are at an increased risk of severe diseases and it might affect fetus too. The matter has been examined by domain knowledge experts based on the evidence that indicate that pregnant women are at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 compared to non-pregnant women in case they get infected. Further, pregnant women with COVID-19 infection are at an increased risk for preterm birth and other adverse pregnancy outcomes including higher chances of neonatal morbidity. Additionally, the experts have also highlighted pre-existing co-morbidities, advanced maternal age, and high body mass Index as factors for severe COVID-19 in pregnancy", the press release stated.
In case a woman has been infected with coronavirus during the current pregnancy, then she should be vaccinated soon after the delivery, the government statement said.
Symptomatic pregnant women appear to be at an increased risk of severe disease and death. In case of severe disease, like all other patients, pregnant women shall also need hospitalisation. Pregnant women with underlying medical conditions like high blood pressure, obesity, age over 35 years are at a higher risk of severe illness due to COVID-19, a fact sheet released by the ministry said.