Senior women’s health officials from Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) are encouraging pregnant and breastfeeding mothers to get Covid-19 vaccines, according to posters shared on the corporation’s social media channels. The graphics contain quotes from different women’s health officials on the vaccines’ safety and benefits, as well as the risks of catching Covid when pregnant.
According to the posts, Dr Salma Abo Yaqoub, Chair of Obstetrics/Gynecology at Women’s Wellness and Research Center (WWRC), says that Covid vaccines have been shown to be safe for pregnant women and foetuses. She also says that even if mothers catch Covid after vaccination, they still have a lower chance of developing severe illness or risking harm to their foetuses and newborn babies. Because of this, she recommends that even women with low-risk pregnancies get the vaccine as soon as they are eligible.
Dr Najat Khenyab, Senior Obstetrics/Gynecology Consultant and Head of Fetomaternal Medicine at HMC, echoes her message. Additionally, she says that pregnant women are more likely to have worse Covid outcomes as pregnancy lowers the immune system. And for those with high-risk pregnancies or chronic illness, this risk is even higher.
Moreover, Dr Mai Abdulla Al-Qubaisi, Acting NICU director at WWRC, encourages breastfeeding women to also get the shot. She states that the Covid-19 vaccines available in Qatar are safe for breastfeeding women as they contain no live viruses and can help protect their babies.