Based on what we know at this time, COVID-19 affects pregnant women no differently than non pregnant women. However, pregnant women in general are at a greater risk of getting sick from respiratory viruses than non pregnant women. Some babies have tested positive shortly after birth, but it is unknown whether the babies got the virus before, during, or after birth. There are few reports of newborns with severe illness; however, much is still unknown about the risk of COVID- 19 to newborns. We do not know if COVID-19 can be spread thru breast milk, but limited data available states that it is highly unlikely. So breastfeeding continues to be the best source of nutrition for all infants.
On the day you deliver, if you are positive for COVID-19 or exhibiting symptoms you will be placed on isolation and more than likely separated from your baby at birth. Some hospitals will allow the infant to stay in your room but a 6 feet separation between mom and baby must be maintained. This is for the good of the child. Most hospitals will allow only one support person in the delivery room, and they will not allow that person to swap out with another.
If you’re pregnant you should take the following precautions:
Lisa Connor APRN, MS, CNM, LCCE
Lisa Connor earned her Masters of Science in Midwifery from SUNY Downstate in Brooklyn, NY in 2000 launching a career in home and hospital births as a full time CNM. Lisa offers a calm reassuring presence that is a blessing to birthing families while her expertise provides a safe and holistic approach to pregnancy and women’s health.
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