Build Confidence in Pregnancy and Fertility

Pregnant, recently delivered, or breastfeeding women may be concerned that COVID-19 vaccines could harm the fetus or their newborn baby. Any person—including parents of adolescents—may be concerned about the possibility that COVID-19 vaccination could interfere with future fertility.

Pregnant or lactating individuals were not included in the COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials, which is typical for most clinical trials. However, safety data and ongoing safety monitoring have not indicated a cause for concern in the hundreds of thousands of pregnant or lactating people who received one of the COVID-19 vaccines since December 2020.

Pregnant women and recently pregnant women with symptomatic COVID-19 infection are at increased risk of more severe illness than nonpregnant women. This includes an increased risk of admission to an intensive care unit, the need for mechanical ventilation and ventilatory support, and death. The risk of severe illness may be even higher in pregnant patients with comorbidities such as obesity and diabetes. Additionally, pregnant women with COVID-19 appear to be at increased risk of preterm birth and might be at increased risk of other adverse pregnancy outcomes (e.g., stillbirth, pregnancy loss).

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine published an article, COVID-19 Vaccine and Infertility: Baseless Claims and Unfounded Social Media Panic, which details how fears about the effect of COVID-19 vaccines on pregnancy, breastfeeding, and fertility emerged.

Key Points

Information for Pharmacy Teams

Utilize APhA’s conversation guide for Addressing Concerns Related to Pregnancy, Breastfeeding, and Fertility. This resource can be used as a playbook to effectively talk with patients and address their specific concerns.
Watch APhA’s open forum webinar on reproductive health and the impact of COVID-19 disease and vaccination to learn how to reach patients who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or contemplating pregnancy.
Watch this short video on COVID Vaccine Safety and Pregnant Women to hear a pharmacist talk about the questions her patients have about COVID-19 vaccines, particularly their safety for pregnant women.
Take this short quiz on COVID-19 Vaccines and Vaccine Confidence to test your knowledge about vaccine confidence basics, the role pharmacists can play in building confidence, myths about vaccine use during childbearing years, and vaccine efficacy and effectiveness.
Visit ACOG’s COVID-19 Vaccines: Tools for Your Practice and Your Patients for access to infographics and fliers to share with your patients who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Information for Patients

Visit CDC’s COVID-19 Vaccines While Pregnant or Breastfeeding to access safety information and links to important resources that can be shared with pregnant or breastfeeding patients.
Review CDC’s COVID-19 Vaccines for People Who Would Like to Have a Baby with patients to explain what you need to know about COVID-19 vaccination and fertility.
Share CDC’s Toolkit for Pregnant People and New Parents to provide patients with resources and tools to help pregnant and recently pregnant people, breastfeeding people, and new parents caring for infants to protect their health.
Share ACOG’s Coronavirus (COVID-19), Pregnancy, and Breastfeeding to provide patients with a printable webpage with frequently asked questions addressed by experts.