JCVI makes pregnant women priority group for Covid vaccination | Coronavirus – After the world

Pregnant women were made a priority vaccination group after research showed they were more prone to more serious illnesses and pregnancy complications when infected with Covid-19.

The vaccine watchdog, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI), announced Thursday that pregnant women would be included in priority group 6 along with adults under 65 with long-term health problems, and urged pregnant women to get it as soon as possible as possible top-up and basic doses.

However, maternal health experts, who have repeatedly called for priority to be given to pregnant women, questioned whether the move would have a significant impact on pregnant women’s access to vaccines.

The JCVI’s decision was backed up by research by Oxford University, which showed that pregnant women and their babies were at particular risk if infected.

Research found that 17 pregnant women died during the delta wave of the pandemic – a 50% increase in maternal mortality compared to usual. It also found that of 1,436 pregnant women hospitalized during the delta wave, 33% required respiratory assistance, about 2% had a stillbirth, 2% lost a pregnancy, and about one in five had a premature birth.

Pregnant women are vaccinated less often than the general population. In August, when pregnant women had to wait until their age group was eligible, only 22% of women giving birth in England had received a single dose, compared to 25% in Scotland and 18% in Wales. The proportion has risen since then, but pregnant women are still disproportionately less likely to be vaccinated, with the lowest rates being seen among those from black and ethnic minorities.

Professor Wei Shen Lim, chairman of the JCVI Covid-19 vaccination, said: “There is no evidence that COVID-19 vaccines used in pregnancy increase the risk of miscarriages, stillbirths, congenital abnormalities, or birth complications.

“It is safer to have a UK approved Covid-19 vaccine than to have Covid-19 itself. Pregnant women are strongly advised to receive a first, second or booster vaccination as needed to better protect themselves and your baby from the serious consequences of COVID-19. “

Gayatri Amirthalingam, from Great Britain Health Security Agency said: “We know that the vaccines used in the UK’s Covid-19 vaccination program have been very effective in preventing serious complications and that the vaccines recommended for pregnant women have a good safety record.

“I would like to urge all pregnant women to come forward and get vaccinated immediately. This is the best way to protect yourself and your baby. “


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