Public health boss urges pregnant women to get vaccinated

Published Monday 23 August 2021 at 14:17

Blackburn with Darwen’s Director of Public Health is urging pregnant women to come forward for vaccination as soon as possible after a rise in pregnant women admitted with severe Covid-19 infections to Royal Blackburn Hospital in recent weeks.

Dominic Harrison’s alert comes as, nationally, some other Local Authority areas are also reporting a higher rate of cases of unvaccinated pregnant women admitted to hospital with serious illness due to Covid infection.

Most of those becoming seriously ill with Covid-19 in hospital while pregnant in Blackburn with Darwen were unvaccinated.

While overall hospital admissions at Royal Blackburn hospital remain low – with no pregnant patients currently in critical care – the local health boss has moved to warn of the risks and promote the benefits of getting vaccinated.

He said:

While the numbers are still small – fewer than five over the last few weeks – I am nevertheless very concerned to see this recent local rise in Covid admissions amongst unvaccinated pregnant women. The Government’s advice is that vaccination for pregnant women is safe and effective and I want to urge all pregnant women in Blackburn with Darwen and across Pennine Lancashire not yet vaccinated to come forward as soon as possible.

I do not want them to panic or become anxious but I do want them to be aware of the risks.

If you are pregnant your chance of getting Covid-19 is not higher than anyone else, however pregnant women are in the clinically vulnerable group as a precaution because they can sometimes be more at risk from viruses.

Although it’s very rare for pregnant women to become seriously ill if they get Covid-19, when it does happen, it may be more likely later in pregnancy. If this happens, there’s a small chance the baby may be born early or the mother may be advised to give birth earlier than the due date.

While the chances of having a stillbirth are low, there is some emerging evidence that the risk may be higher if the mother has Covid-19 at the time of birth.

If you’re from an ethnic minority group, evidence suggests you’re more likely to be admitted to hospital if you get Covid-19.

The raised risk of serious effects of infection in pregnant women now also seems to be being observed in other locations across the UK. For instance pregnant women in North Staffordshire have also been urged to get vaccinated this month as the Royal Stoke University Hospital is currently seeing two or three expectant mothers a week in critical care – much more than in previous waves.

You can currently get vaccinated against coronavirus (COVID-19) if you’re aged 16 or over and:

• You’re pregnant or think you might be
• You’re breastfeeding
• You’re trying for a baby or might get pregnant in the future

There are currently many locations and opportunities to get vaccinated across the borough, click here for more information.

This site uses cookies. Find out more about this site’s cookies.