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Updated on June 23, 2022 9:27 pm
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Updated on June 23, 2022 9:27 pm
All countries
Updated on June 23, 2022 9:27 pm

Global Statistics

All countries
Updated on June 23, 2022 9:27 pm
All countries
Updated on June 23, 2022 9:27 pm
All countries
Updated on June 23, 2022 9:27 pm
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Can Breastfeeding Moms Get Covid Vaccine

Building On The International Labor Organisation Standards How Can Employers Ensure That Workers Who Are Breastfeeding Or Expressing Milk But Have Not Received The Covid

Governments and employers must respect and uphold the right of women to breastfeed. Workers who are currently breastfeeding should not be forced to leave employment if not vaccinated. They should be supported to remain employed and incentivized to continue breastfeeding whether they receive the vaccine or not.

After The J&j Vaccine Rollout Was Halted Due To Side Effects In The Us The Sa Regulatory Board Is Now Opening Up Vaccinations To Pregnant And Breastfeeding Women

As of 29 April 2021, the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority is recommending that high-risk pregnant women and those with cormobidities get the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine. 

The use of the vaccines in pregnant women has been uncertain, given that pregnant and breastfeeding women were excluded from the initial vaccine trials. Research, however, is indicating that pregnant women are at higher risk of Covid-19 infection. These women placed in intensive care units either give birth prematurely or die. 

Should Breastfeeding Health Workers Who Opt Not To Be Vaccinated Be Prioritised For Ppe Or Given Assignments With Low Risk Of Exposure

Governments and employers are urged to put measures in place to minimise the risk of COVID-19 exposure

for health workers who breastfeed through adequate protection at the workplace. It is important that employers and governments prioritise provision of Personal Protective Equipment and lower risk assignments to health workers who are lactating.

Does The Ability To Continue Breastfeeding Or Provide Expressed Milk Change After A Mother Is Vaccinated

It is highly unlikely that vaccination will have any impact on women’s ability to make milk. The WHO SAGE does NOT recommend stopping breastfeeding after

vaccination. Women currently breastfeeding or expressing milk should continue after receiving the vaccine and can be confident that vaccination will not affect their milk supply. Taking the vaccine should not be an impediment to begin breastfeeding or a cause for its interruption.

Once I Read All Of The Data I Felt Confident That The Vaccine Was The Right Choice For My Family And Me

Are a COVID vaccine and breastfeeding okay?

The chance to not live this nightmare every day is what the vaccine meant to me. Just a chance. Hope.

My family members had a healthy amount of hesitation and questions about the vaccine. My husband is also a physician, and he knew I was eager to get the vaccine, and he supported my decision.

To my kids, I explained the vaccine as I do to most people. The vaccine is like a hammer that recognizes the circular, flat part of a nail—the spike protein. Once you have the vaccine, when your body sees the nail’s flat part, it will always hit it with a hammer and get rid of it. As long as the top of the nail stays the same, despite variants, the hammer will keep working.

What Advice Should Women Currently Breastfeeding Or Expressing Milk Receive Regarding The Vaccine

Lactating women considering receiving the COVID-19 vaccine should have access to information about the safety and efficacy of the vaccine including that:

  • Breastfeeding is vital to the health of infants and their mothers.
  • Vaccine efficacy in lactating women is expected to be similar to efficacy in non-lactating women.
  • There are no data on the safety of mRNA vaccines such as the COVID-19 vaccines on lactating women or their breastfeeding children. However, as the vaccine is not a live virus vaccine and the mRNA does not enter the nucleus of the cell of vaccinated individuals and is degraded quickly, it is biologically and clinically unlikely to pose a risk to the breastfeeding child or child receiving expressed human milk.
  • For AZD1222 vaccine and the Ad26.COV2.S vaccine, it is unknown whether the vaccine is excreted in human milk, however, as these are non-replicating vaccines, it is unlikely to pose a risk to the breastfeeding child.

It is important to continue to provide the necessary counselling and support for breastfeeding women to build confidence in the safety and adequacy of breastfeeding and risks of not breastfeeding in the context of COVID-19. Refer to FREQUENTLY ASKEDQUESTIONS: Breastfeeding and COVID-19 for healthcare workers.

Pregnant And Recently Pregnant People Are At Increased Risk For Severe Illness From Covid

Although the overall risk of severe illness is low, pregnant and recently pregnant people are at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 when compared with non-pregnant people. Severe illness includes illness that requires hospitalization, intensive care, need for a ventilator or special equipment to breathe, or illness that results in death. Additionally, pregnant people with COVID-19 are at increased risk of preterm birth and might be at increased risk of other adverse pregnancy outcomes, compared with pregnant women without COVID-19.

Should Women Currently Breastfeeding Or Providing Expressed Milk Receive The Vaccines

Yes. WHO SAGE recommends that if a lactating woman is part of a ‘high risk group’ e.g. health worker or part of a group recommended for vaccination, vaccination CAN be offered. Therefore, healthy individuals currently breast- feeding or expressing milk CAN receive the vaccines.

Breastfeeding is vital to the health of infants and their mothers. Research on COVID-19 vaccines did not include breastfeeding women or consider the effects of mRNA vaccines or non-replicating vaccines on them or on the breastfed child. However, the absence of data does not mean that the vaccine is not safe for lactating women

or their children. Therefore, the WHO SAGE guidance recommends that mothers who are vaccinated continue breastfeeding after vaccination.

Ive Been Told That I Need To Stop Breastfeeding To Have The Vaccine Is This True

You don’t need to stop breastfeeding in order to have the vaccine. The RCOG website states that “there is no plausible mechanism by which any vaccine ingredient could pass to your baby through breast milk. You should therefore not stop breastfeeding in order to be vaccinated against Covid-19.” RCOG

The decision is up to you, although it’s a good idea to speak to a health professional first and find information on trusted sources like the RCOG and government websites.

Should There Be Research Undertaken On Vaccination Of Breastfeeding Women

WHO SAGE acknowledged the lack of data for recommending the vaccine to lactating women. Given the importance of breastfeeding, researchers are encouraged to prioritise this topic and provide data on the safety of these vaccines for breastfeeding mothers and their infants.


This guidance will be periodically updated as new evidence emerges and new questions arise. You can pose questions to the moderated online forum and send feedback on the FAQs to the IFE Core Group,

IFE Core Group, UNICEF, COVID-19 Infant Feeding Working Group. Frequently asked questions: COVID-19 vaccines and breastfeeding based on WHO SAGE interim recommendations .

The Covid Vaccine And Breastfeeding: What Nursing Parents Need To Know

Experts recommend that nursing women receive the COVID-19 vaccine, even though they were initially excluded from clinical trials. Here’s your guide to benefits, side effects, and other safety data. 

Here’s some good news for postpartum mamas: Most experts and organizations recommend that breastfeeding women receive the COVID-19 vaccine. You’ve probably got lots of questions, so we spoke with experts to learn more about safety, benefits, and more.

Ive Read On A Forum That I Shouldnt Have The Vaccine Is This True

You may find the decision on whether or not to get vaccinated an emotional and difficult one to make. But be aware that many messages on online and other forums are based on individual opinion and not on scientific evidence.

Speak to a health professional about the vaccine to get up-to-date and reliable guidance. It’s worth bearing in mind that the vaccine has now been given to large numbers of people to make sure it meets strict safety standards. RCOG

Why Haven’t Breastfeeding Mothers Been Included In Vaccine Trials

Can Babies Get Covid From Breastfeeding

“Pregnant and breastfeeding women are almost always excluded from clinical trials, so it’s not unusual,” says Dr. Rankins. That’s because experts don’t fully understand the risks to babies, who might be affected through a mother’s breast milk.  Some organizations, such as the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists , advocate that this standard should be changed. They believe “pregnant and lactating individuals should be given the opportunity to participate, and not have that decision made for them,” says Dr. Rankins.

Breastfeeding And The Covid Vaccine: Its All About The Antibodies

Leigh Critzer ThravesKidsPrevention

Should breastfeeding moms get the COVID vaccine? Ann Kellams, MD, says yes, absolutely.

We’ve all heard that breastfeeding is good for babies. What’s been less clear in recent months is whether or not breastfeeding moms should receive the relatively new COVID-19 vaccine.

Ann Kellams, MD, a pediatrician and breastfeeding expert, shared some facts about breastfeeding, illness, antibodies, and whether nursing moms should get the shot.

Is It Safe For Mothers To Breastfeed After They Are Vaccinated

Yes. For Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna mRNA-1273, the WHO SAGE clarifies that: “As the vaccine is not a live virus vaccine and the mRNA does not enter the nucleus of the cell and is degraded quickly, it is biologically and clinically unlikely there is a risk to the breastfeeding child,” and for AZD1222 and Janssen Ad26. COV2.S “as the vaccine is a non-replicating vaccine, it is unlikely to pose a risk to the breastfeeding child.” Mothers who are vaccinated should be encouraged to continue breastfeeding to protect their infants.

Doctors Think The Covid Vaccine Is Safe For Breastfeeding Moms

Elizabeth Ransom, M.D., executive vice president and chief physician officer of Baptist Health, tells Romper in an interview that the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology has issued vaccination guidelines for breastfeeding moms and moms-to-be.

“ACOG and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine came out pretty strongly that they believe pregnant and lactating women should have the vaccine available to them,� she says. “Pregnant and lactating women have been advised to take vaccines for a number of years. They did say, in the study, they didn’t actually recruit pregnant women as study participants, but with 44,000 people, there were people who became pregnant in that time, and ACOG did point out that there have been no indications of adverse events.�

Board-certified OB-GYN Marta Perez, M.D., who has a major following thanks to her educational Instagram stories, received her vaccine two weeks postpartum while breastfeeding. Her IG is full of both her medical opinion on the vaccine as well as her new mom opinion, and explainers on why she chose to get the vaccine while breastfeeding. It’s a great resource for moms who are weighing their own vaccination decision.

Can Women Continue Breastfeeding Immediately After Vaccination

Vaccination is not an indication to discontinue breastfeeding at any point. WHO recommends that mothers should continue to breastfeed after the vaccination as none of the current vaccines in use is excreted into breastmilk. There is mounting evidence that the breast milk of the vaccinated mother carries antibodies against the Novel Coronavirus. One recent study has detected IgA and IgG antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 in breastmilk till six weeks after the vaccination. It also found neutralising effects in the immune proteins suggesting protection for infants from the COVID-19 disease. Summing up, COVID-19 vaccines offer real benefits for protecting both mother and child.

Also Read: What Is Important For Breastfeeding Mothers In Times Of COVID-19? Dr Shariqua Yunus Of World Food Programme Explains

Should Pregnant Women And Breastfeeding Mothers Get The Covid

FILE – In this Thursday, May 7, 2020 file photo, a pregnant woman wearing a face mask and gloves holds her belly as she waits in line for groceries with hundreds during a food pantry in Waltham, Mass. APAP

William Thornton |

Worried about potential side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine? Are you unsure what activities are safe following vaccination? Whether you’re vaccinated or not, will be reaching out to public health experts to get your concerns addressed about the COVID-19 vaccine. and we’ll get an expert to directly answer your question.

Here are the questions we have been able to answer for readers.

Readers submitted these questions:

One reader asks: “My daughter refuses to get the vaccine because she is afraid it will prevent her from becoming pregnant or harm the baby. She is 23.”

Another reader: “Some parents have received vaccinations and are asking if the vaccinations create fertility issues for their daughters – ages 17-22?”

And: “Hello, Please have the correct answer for those breastfeeding, on the reluctance to get vaccinated. Thank You.”

To get some answers, we consulted Dr. Karen Leigh Samples, an independent OB/GYN who serves as the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department Chair at Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children, and Dr. Rachael Lee, a doctor with UAB’s Division of Infectious Diseases.

It should be noted that any questions you have about your own health should be addressed with your primary care provider.

Covid Vaccines And Breastfeeding: Is It Safe And Recommended

Vaccination is an important part of maternal and child health, and it’s recommended that pregnant women get vaccinated against COVID-19.

But what about breastfeeding women and their babies?

Like pregnant women, breastfeeding women were excluded from COVID-19 vaccine trials, which means clinical safety data is still limited for this group.

However, real-world evidence — and a growing body of research — suggests COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective for breastfeeding women and their children.

” have been monitoring what has been happening with pregnant and breastfeeding women, and there’s been no concerns in terms of increased complications or side effects,” said Karleen Gribble, adjunct associate professor at Western Sydney University’s School of Nursing and Midwifery.

Catch up on the main COVID-19 news from August 20 with a look back at our blog

Dr Gribble added there were no theoretical safety concerns, based on what’s known about similar vaccines, and that COVID-19 vaccines were not thought to pose any risk to lactating women or their infants.

In Australia, , and women are advised that they do not need to stop breastfeeding before or after vaccination.

Unlike pregnancy, breastfeeding does not appear to increase the risk of severe disease from COVID-19. 

However, vaccination reduces the risk of breastfeeding women contracting COVID, getting sick, and spreading the virus to others.

You Can’t Pass The Virus To Your Baby Through Breast Milk

Most women’s concerns about getting the vaccine while breastfeeding revolve around one question: Can my baby get COVID through my breast milk if I get the vaccine? Short answer: no.

“I think there’s always a concern out there, ‘Can you get the virus from the vaccine, or will pregnant women give the virus to their baby?’ And the answer is no,� says Ransom. “The vaccine is based on mRNA, which is a small piece of genetic material, and the body develops immunity to that, so that’s how we become protected. There’s no live virus in it at all.�

“Because it is not a live virus, there is no virus to transmit with nursing,� says Kjersti Aagaard, M.D., Ph.D., maternal-fetal medicine specialist at Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, in an interview with Romper. “Although about four in 100 people had a fever with the first dose of the vaccine in the trial, and 16 in 100 after the second dose in the trial, this did not mean that they became infected. These are anticipated responses to the vaccine, and clues that it is arming your immune system to fight the virus should you become infected.�

I’m Still Breastfeeding My Daughter And That’s By Design

New moms get COVID

I’ve seen no changes in my milk production, although I didn’t anticipate that I would. I knew there was very little plausible chance that the mRNA vaccine would end up going from my bloodstream to my breast tissue to my breast milk. Even if it did, my baby would digest it like any other protein.

I weaned my other two children after breastfeeding them for a year, but there was no chance I would wean my daughter at that age during this pandemic. She has little to no way of protecting herself from this virus. She’s too young to wear a mask, and she’s not going to be offered a vaccine for a very long time. If there’s any chance that the antibodies I make against COVID-19 can be transferred in my breast milk to my baby, I absolutely want that.

When Will The Novel Coronavirus Pandemic Be Over?

While this was my decision, I want other breastfeeding women to know that it’s OK to question what they read about the virus. I encourage people who are trying to decide whether to get the vaccine to trust science.

There are many studies happening right now on pregnant and breastfeeding moms, particularly with healthcare workers who got vaccinated. There will be more evidence on the vaccine for these groups soon, hopefully in time for when the vaccines are offered to more individuals.

This Vaccine Was My First Glimmer Of Hope In 10 Months

I read the studies about the two FDA-authorized vaccines and kept up on the latest evidence. And, because I’m breastfeeding my now 14-month-old daughter, I read statements from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, , Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine, American Academy of Pediatrics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and basically everything I could find about the recommendations on the vaccine for pregnant and breastfeeding moms.

The takeaway was the same: Animal studies did not find that the vaccine would cause harm to pregnant or breastfeeding individuals, but more data is still needed in humans. The vaccine should be offered to pregnant and breastfeeding moms, and those women should decide whether or not to get it based on their individual risks.

‘I Just Got The COVID-19 Vaccine’

I was already leaning toward getting the vaccine. I believe in science and evidence, after all. But I also don’t take anything at face value. I know that there wasn’t any safety data on the vaccine’s impact on pregnant and breastfeeding women because researchers didn’t study the vaccine in those groups. That’s normal for vaccine development.

Follow Recommendations To Prevent The Spread Of Covid

After you are fully vaccinated, you may be able to participate in many of the activities that you did before the pandemic. Learn more about what you can do when you have been fully vaccinated.

If you have a condition or are taking medications that weaken your immune system, you may NOT be fully protected even if you are fully vaccinated. Talk to your healthcare provider. Even after vaccination, you may need to continue taking all precautions.

Should Pregnant And Breastfeeding Women Get The Covid

When the COVID-19 vaccines first became available, there was little information about how they might affect pregnant and breastfeeding women.

Now, the evidence and expert advice is clear: The COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective for pregnant and breastfeeding women, and top health care experts recommend vaccination for this group.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, two leading organizations representing specialists in obstetric care, recommend that all pregnant women be vaccinated against COVID-19. Read the recommendation. And the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also has updated its guidance to recommend vaccination for pregnant and breastfeeding women.

Cdc Recommendations For People Who Are Breastfeeding

COVID-19 vaccination is recommended for all people 12 years and older, including people who are breastfeeding. Clinical trials for the COVID-19 vaccines currently used in the United States did not include people who are breastfeeding. Because the vaccines have not been studied in people who are breastfeeding, there are limited data available on the:

  • Safety of COVID-19 vaccines in people who are breastfeeding
  • Effects of vaccination on the breastfed baby
  • Effects on milk production or excretion

COVID-19 vaccines cannot cause infection in anyone, including the mother or the baby, and the vaccines are effective at preventing COVID-19 in people who are breastfeeding. Recent reports have shown that breastfeeding people who have received mRNA COVID-19 vaccines have antibodies in their breastmilk, which could help protect their babies. More data are needed to determine what protection these antibodies may provide to the baby.4-7

Breast Milk Contents Adjust When Mom Or Baby Is Sick

Some nursing moms say their breast milk seems to change color or consistency when baby or mom is sick. According to Kellams, breast milk does change when mom or baby is sick.

“Breast milk contains antibodies to infectious ‘threats’ that are in the environment that the baby shares with the mother. If there are harmful bacteria or viruses, for example, or if the baby is sick, the mother’s body will produce antibodies and protective factors for those specific bugs. The milk will have higher concentrations of these infection-fighting substances,” explained Kellams.

“If mom is sick, her body will make substances to help protect the baby. If baby is sick, mom’s body will make substances to help prevent more severe infection and to help them recover and heal.”

Without The Vaccine Is There A Risk Of Getting Covid

Pregnancy does not increase the risk of COVID-19 infection, but the current evidence suggests that pregnant women are at risk of severe illness from COVID-19 as compared to non-pregnant women. Many pregnant women get a mild infection. More than 90 per cent recover without the need for hospitalisation but rapid deterioration may occur in a few. Symptomatic pregnant women appear to be at an increased risk of severe disease and adverse pregnancy outcomes including admission to the ICU, preterm births, pre-eclampsia like symptoms, caesarean sections and rarely death. This is consequent to the pregnant uterus pressing upon the diaphragm and compromising the woman’s ability to cope with low oxygen saturation levels thus endangering the lives of the mother as well as the foetus.

Also Read: COVID-19 Vaccination Rollout In Women, Pregnant & Lactating Mothers, An Expert Explains

The vaccines are safe and protect pregnant women against disease and its severe complications. The COVID-19 vaccine can be taken anytime during the pregnancy. All women under 50 years including pregnant women can take the vaccine. The few contraindications for vaccination during pregnancy include the history of allergy to vaccines, food items or medications or an allergic reaction to a previous dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Temporary contraindications during pregnancy are:

Also Read: COVID-19: Pregnant And Thinking Of Getting Vaccinated? Here’s What Government Guidelines Say About Safety, Side-Effects

Covid Vaccines And Breastfeeding: What The Data Say

A mother breastfeeds her newborn at a hospital in Belgium.Credit: Francisco Seco/AP/Shutterstock

Molly Siegel had long awaited a COVID-19 vaccine. As an obstetrician at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, she regularly saw pregnant people with COVID-19, and knew that the vaccine was the best way to protect herself, her family and others in her workplace. But with a seven-month-old baby at home who was still breastfeeding, she felt hesitant.

Understandably so. Following established norms for clinical trials, pregnant and breastfeeding people were not included in any of the trials for COVID-19 vaccines. So, as health systems around the world began to vaccinate eligible adults, scores of lactating people were left to make their decision in the dark.

“I certainly was frustrated that there weren’t studies on the vaccine in pregnant and lactating women — that as a group, they were excluded from the research,” Siegel says. “It made it really hard to know, as both the patient and the provider, how to think about the vaccine.”

Still, Siegel could not see any plausible risk to her breast milk , and focused on the benefit of protecting herself and everyone around her. So she got the shot. Then, she donated samples of her breast milk to researchers who would analyse its contents in one of the first such studies.

Vaccination Advised For Pregnant Breastfeeding Moms

Npr Covid Vaccine Breastfeeding

KINGSTON, Jamaica. Tuesday, August 17, 2021. The Ministry of Health & Wellness is advising pregnant and breastfeeding mothers to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

This is in line with recommendations from the World Health Organisation and having regard to evidence which suggests that pregnant women with COVID-19 are at higher risk of developing severe illness compared to non-pregnant women of reproductive age.

Severe illness includes illness that requires hospitalisation, intensive care, a ventilator or special equipment to breathe, or illness that results in death.

COVID-19 in pregnancy has also been associated with an increased risk of preterm birth and of newborns requiring neonatal intensive care. Pregnant women who are 35 years and older or have high body mass index or an existing comorbidity, such as diabetes or hypertension, are at particular risk of serious outcomes from COVID-19.

Pregnant women who are vaccinated against COVID-19, as other members of the population, can experience common side effects. Those side effects, which are mild and temporary, include swelling, tenderness and pain at the injection site; fatigue; chills, fever, headache, and nausea.

To help pregnant women determine if they should or should not be vaccinated, they will be provided with information about the risks of COVID-19 in pregnancy, the likely benefits of vaccination and the current limitations of safety data by their health care provider.

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