Birth in the Know

Should Pregnant Women Take the Covid19 Vaccine?

beautiful young, pregnant woman, in beach

There are many questions regarding pregnancy and the Covd-19 vaccine.  First of all, nobody can tell someone else what they should or shouldn’t do. The better question would be, “Is the Covid-19 vaccine safe for pregnant women?”

The answer is not clear because there hasn’t been any testing on pregnant women. This is where it gets tricky. They really can’t test the vaccine on pregnant women because they have no idea what the risks are, if any.   The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologist came out with a Covid-19 Vaccine Advisory Statement. It’s an interesting read. 

They say pregnant women should not be excluded, and they should have full access to the information on the vaccine safety, including data that is unavailable. 

I’m not sure exactly what that means.  Where can we find the data that is unavailable? The statement goes on to say  that if pregnant women do not want the vaccine they should be supported in their decision, and encouraged to practice other safety measures like hand-washing, social distancing and mask wearing.

In an article in New York Magazine, Ruth Faden, founder of John Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics, stated she was surprised when British health authorities specifically said that pregnant and lactating women shouldn’t take the vaccine. Faden went on to say, “I hate this outcome. I don’t like the fact that the burden of decision-making will fall to individual women.”

She was hoping for an unambiguous recommendation. I believe women should get to choose for themselves. Given that all the facts, and data and information about safety is missing, it makes it more challenging to make an educated decision. But why shouldn’t the burden fall on the individual?

ACOG is basically saying they aren’t advising for or against the vaccine for pregnant and lactating women.  Women should discuss options with their doctor. 

Do the doctors know any more than the rest of us about this new Covid-19 vaccine that is being tested on anybody that is willing to take it?

So how will you know if you should take this vaccine if you are pregnant, or about to be, or if you are breastfeeding? Like any other choice in life, you can go within and feel what is right for you. Sure, ask your health care provider, or anybody else. Gather the facts, and listen to your own inner guidance. I can tell you that I wouldn’t take it, but I am not you. You may feel completely differently.


Covid-19 has changed almost everything we knew before it descended upon us.  Fear is rampant. Please don’t let fear drive your choices.  This is handing over your power.  Stay in the driver’s seat.   Whatever choice you make, have it be the one you want to live with. There is no right or wrong here. We are all exploring new territory.

2 thoughts on “Should Pregnant Women Take the Covid19 Vaccine?”

  1. I love what Faden says, “I don’t like the fact that the burden of decision-making will fall to individual women” when it comes to whether pregnant people should take the COVID vaccine. In our own doula practice we find that the lack of evidence based information being shared puts women in awkward positions of needing to do their own research and not being able to find enough trusted resources. Thank you for brining attention to this important topic.

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