Pregnancy and COVID-19 vaccination: 5 questions with Amy Beyer

The COVID-19 pandemic has created confusing times when it comes to getting vaccinated. Some have a hesitancy due to the swiftness in which the vaccines were created. Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson all represent different phases of the vaccine creation.

So which one is right for you? And which one is right for you if you are a pregnant person?

For CareOregon Contract Specialist and expecting mother, Amy Beyer, being in a position where two lives may be affected can be even more confusing. We asked her a few questions about her recent experience getting vaccinated. Here are her responses.

Q: Congrats on your pregnancy. Can you elaborate on why you got vaccinated?

AB: Thanks! I'm eight months pregnant. I choose to get the COVID-19 vaccine when I Iearned that the baby will likely receive benefits of the vaccine’s protection in utero 1. It's a relief to know that I can do something to help protect them.

Q: Did you seek out information from the CDC or OHA before getting your shot? And if so, did you feel confident going in with the info you had?

masked pregnant woman recently vaccinated for COVID-19AB: My husband and I read through the CDC website and received research articles from a friend with a PhD in biomedical engineering and who is herself a mom. We shared our findings with my Kaiser/OHSU primary care physician at my prenatal appointments and talked through the risks and benefits. There came a point where I had enough information to make an informed decision.

At the same time that I was researching COVID-19 vaccines I was also reading-up on common pain medications for labor and delivery. What really surprised me was how much more research has been done on the COVID-19 vaccine than many commonly used labor pain medications that have been around for decades. That really put it into perspective for me.

Q: The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines have been hailed as being a bit friendlier to pregnant people. Which shot did you get and did you purposely seek it out?

I got the Pfizer vaccine as it was the one available to me to get scheduled prior to going into labor. It was important for me to get vaccinated while still pregnant to increase the chances of me passing on antibodies to the baby.

Q: What advice would you have for other pregnant people out there that may be hesitant to get vaccinated? 

One tip I’ve found helpful when talking with people is I like to learn where they got their information so I can verify for myself if it came from a reliable source.

Also, that it’s normal to have questions; having my first child I am starting to get the picture that having a lot of questions is to be expected. I hope that others are receptive to your questions and you find the resources to getting them answered. Never settle for less.

Q: So are you having a girl or a boy?

Being pregnant during COVID-19 has come with a lot of unknowns, like continually changing hospital delivery policies being one of them. We want one of those unknowns to be fun so we’re leaving finding out the gender a surprise until delivery.


Sources:

(1) https://www.uchicagomedicine.org/forefront/coronavirus-disease-covid-19/mrna-covid-19-vaccine-pregnancy-breastfeeding