For Immediate Release
2 November 2021
Pregnancy can be a challenging time for many women. Even more so, during a pandemic.
Mothers must think not only about their own health and safety but also that of their unborn baby and how to best protect their child(ren). Data shows that COVID-19 is more dangerous in pregnant women, especially towards the end of pregnancy. Pregnant women who are older or are living with hypertension, diabetes, obesity, TB or untreated HIV are especially at risk.
According to the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists(UK), stillbirth and preterm deliveries are higher in COVID-19 positive patients.
“Since March 2020, George Hospital has seen an increase in pregnant women with COVID-19 pneumonia. The vaccination protects you, your unborn baby, your family and your community from the effects of the virus”, said Dr Carl Firmin, Head of Clinical Unit: Obstetrics & Gynaecology at George Hospital.
Pregnant and breastfeeding women are receiving COVID-19 vaccinations throughout the world. You can have the vaccine at any stage of your pregnancy. Mcedakza Malolom (33) is six months pregnant and decided to get her COVID-19 vaccination at Thembalethu Clinic. “I want to protect myself and the baby”, she said.
Mothers who are breastfeeding are also eligible for the vaccine and so also women who are planning a pregnancy. By getting the vaccine you will decrease your chances of getting severe COVID-19 or dying from COVID-19. The vaccine can protect you and possibly your baby from getting even mild COVID-19 infection. None of the COVID-19 vaccines contain the live virus, so it cannot give you or your baby COVID-19. The vaccine may cause the same side effects whether you are pregnant or not. These are usually mild. You can use paracetamol if you have a fever or headache after vaccination.
For more information visit: www.westerncape.gov.za
Caption: Mcedakza Malolom had her vaccination to protect her unborn child. With her is Sr Meissenheimer (vaccinator) and Ms Nolokwe (administrator).
Principal Communications Officer
Garden Route and Central Karoo Districts
Western Cape Government Health
Tel: 044 813 1831