CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — Ages 16 to 39, the peak child-bearing ages for women. Globally, studies show this female age group is hesitant about taking any of the COVID-19 vaccines.
A study conducted by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that in the U.S. and Russia, just 45% of pregnant women were willing to be vaccinated. While mong non-pregnant barely half were willing to take the vaccine.
But doctors are here to clear the air.
“It’s safe for women, it’s safe in pregnancy, it’s safe outside of pregnancy, it’s safe for nursing,” said Dr. Karinna Andrews, Chief of the OBGYN Dept. at WVU School of Medicine.
Rumors and misconceptions of the vaccine have flooded social media, causing many young women to worry about infertility down the road.
“Some of my friends are holding off and waiting. It hasn’t been out for that long and I’d like to see the results and I don’t feel like I’m very at risk,” said student, Emma Guzik.
But doctors quickly reject the infertility rumors.
“Where it came from was that it affected a protein that is involved in the placental formation, and in fact, it doesn’t affect that protein,” said Dr. Andrews.
While there has yet to be a completed clinical trial for the impact of the vaccines on pregnant women, doctors say it’s common not to test new medications on pregnant women.
Studies have shown receiving the vaccines while pregnant can lead to some benefits.
“We are seeing that babies that are being born to moms who have had the vaccine actually have antibodies. So that is a huge thing, and we have seen it passed in breast milk as well,” said Dr. Andrews.
Doctors believe the benefits ultimately outweigh the risks, especially with more than 217 childhood deaths so far attributed to COVID-19.
“The risk of covid in pregnancy is high, the risk of miscarrying is high, the risk of having a demise is high. But the risk of getting the vaccine is incredibly low,” said Dr. Andrews.