CDC study: COVID vaccination during pregnancy protects infants

Getting vaccinated against the coronavirus while pregnant can protect infants 6 months and younger from being hospitalized for COVID, according to a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Driving the news: The study found that receiving two doses of an MRNA vaccine can help protect pregnant people and also makes it 61% less likely for infants to be hospitalized with COVID-19.

  • This is likely possible due to “passive transplacental antibody transfer,” per the CDC study.
  • The study was conducted at 20 pediatric hospitals across 17 states between July 1, 2021 and Jan. 17, 2022.

The big picture: The CDC has repeatedly urged pregnant people to get inoculated in order to prevent severe illness and death.

  • “Infants are at risk for COVID-19 – associated complications, including respiratory failure and other life-threatening complications,” the study says.

Between the lines: There is currently no vaccine available for children under the age of 5.

  • The CDC study suggests that even without a vaccine for newborns, they can still have some protection against severe disease.

What they’re saying: “The bottom line is that maternal vaccination is a really important way to help protect these young infants,” said Dana Meaney-Delman, chief of infant outcomes monitoring research and prevention branch at the CDC, per CNN.

Go deeper: COVID hospitalizations surge in children too young for vaccine

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