The Union Health Ministry on Friday announced that pregnant women will now be eligible for Covid-19 vaccination in the country. It said that the pregnant women can now register themselves on CoWIN or walk-in to the nearest centre for inoculation against coronavirus infection.
The decision was taken based on recommendations from National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI) and has been communicated to all states and union territories to implement it under the ongoing National Covid-19 Vaccination Program.
“Union Health Ministry approves the vaccination of pregnant women against Covid-19. Pregnant women may now register on CoWIN or walk-in to the nearest Covid Vaccination Centre (CVC) to get themselves vaccinated,” the ministry said.
“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,” it added.
NTAGI Chief NK Arora has said that both pregnant woman and child can be saved by Covid-19 vaccine. “Pregnant women can take the vaccine at any time since detection of the pregnancy. It does not seem that the vaccine will have any ill-effect on the child growing up in the mother’s womb. If the mother develops immunity, it will be passed on to the foetus. One in 10 lakh women have experienced bleeding or formation of clots,” he said.
The symptoms that manifest are severe headache, vomiting along with headache, stomachache along with vomiting tendency or also breathing problems. In such cases, family members should quickly take the pregnant woman to a hospital where vaccination is done. The reason for illness can be investigated at the hospital and required treatment can be provided to her.
Earlier, Niti Aayog member Dr VK Paul had said that vaccines – Covishield, Covaxin, Sputnik V and Moderna – which were approved by the Centre, are safe for both lactating mothers and pregnant women.
A recent ICMR study had shown that in the second wave of Covid-19 wave, the pregnant and postpartum women were severely affected with both fatality and symptomatic cases being considerably higher than the first wave.