Published research and real-world evidence from other countries has shown that mRNA vaccines are safe for pregnant women. Over 200,000 pregnant women have been vaccinated in the USA and UK, with no adverse effects on the person, pregnancy or baby.
COVID-19 vaccines do not cause infection, including in pregnant people or their babies.6 None of the licensed and available COVID-19 vaccines contain the live virus that causes COVID-19, so a COVID-19 vaccine cannot make anyone sick with COVID-19, including pregnant people or their babies.5,6
Vaccination is the best way to reduce your risk of becoming seriously unwell with COVID-19. Those who are pregnant and their unborn baby have a significantly higher risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19 than non-pregnant people:
- 5 times higher risk of requiring a hospital admission.
- 2-3 times higher risk of needing treatment in a hospital intensive care unit.
- 1.5 times higher chance of being born preterm or admission to a special care nursery.1,2
Research shows that the antibodies produced by vaccination cross the placenta and may provide some protection to newborn babies.1 This is the same for whooping cough and flu vaccines that have been given during pregnancy for many years.1
COVID-19 vaccination may also provide indirect protection to babies by transferring antibodies through the placenta during pregnancy or through breastmilk while breastfeeding.2,5,6