Dr Hilary explains why pregnant women can't get coronavirus vaccine yet
3 December 2020, 08:15 | Updated: 3 December 2020, 11:25
The GMB doctor explained the reason why pregnant women are unable to receive the Covid-19 vaccine.
Dr Hilary has spoken out about why pregnant women will be unable to receive the coronavirus vaccine straight away, explaining that more research needs to be done.
Speaking on Good Morning Britain earlier today, the doctor was told by host Ben Shepherd that many pregnant women had been in touch with the show asking whether they would receive the newly-approved Pfizer/BioNTech, which will soon be rolled out in the UK.
Dr Hilary explained that further testing is required to determine whether the vaccine can cause harm in pregnancy before the vaccine it's rolled out to them.
He said: "Currently, the Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation is saying we haven't done enough work on pregnancy yet to be able to say confidently that they should be vaccinated.
"And we always take absolute precautions with any medicine or procedure in pregnancy, because of the risk to unborn babies.
"I am not saying there is a risk, but we don't know, therefore it makes absolute sense to say, we need to be cautious until we have rolled the vaccine out to many many more people, and animal studies, to make sure there is no harm to the foetus.
"It is probably the case that pregnant women are not being vaccinated, just like we are not vaccinating children under 16".
The official government guidelines set out advice to healthcare practitioners on the first vaccines expected to become available in the UK and how they should be administered.
It currently states that the available data on the vaccine ‘does not indicate any safety concern or harm to pregnancy’.
However, it adds that there is ‘insufficient evidence’ to recommend routine use of COVID-19 vaccines during pregnancy, meaning the vaccination should be given to women after they give birth.
The guidance says: "Pregnant women at high risk (including health care workers) should be offered a vaccine as soon as possible after completion of pregnancy."
It adds that women who find out they're pregnant after taking the first course of vaccine should "complete her pregnancy before finishing the recommended schedule".