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Pregnant and breastfeeding

The Danish Health Authority recommends that pregnant women are vaccinated against COVID-19. Read more here.

As pregnant, you are in high risk of severe illness due to covid-19. That is the reason why the Danish Health Authority recommends pregnant women to get vaccinated against covid-19. Vaccination will protect you but also the child you are carrying.

If you are still undecided, we recommend that you get advice from your midwife at your next appointment if you are pregnant. If you are breastfeeding, you can get advice from your health visitor.

Please learn more in this publication:

Information about vaccination against covid-19 for pregnant and breastfeeding women

Follow the general guidance 

If you are pregnant, please continue to follow our guidance to help prevent the spread of infection – especially if you are not vaccinated.

  • Stay at home and get tested if you have symptoms
  • Keep your distance
  • Open windows and doors and ventilate your home regularly 
  • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitiser
  • Clean thoroughly and regularly, especially surfaces that are touched by many people
 

 

 

I'm pregnant or trying to get pregnant

1. Why does the Danish Health Authority recommend vaccination against covid-19?

The Danish Health Authority recommends that pregnant women are vaccinated against covid-19. If you are pregnant we recommend vaccination from 1st trimester. It is the same recommendation for the 3th vaccine dose.

Our recommendation is based on a professional assessment of scientific studies, efficacy and side effects data, and advice from experts.

The conclusion is that it is safe and effective for pregnant or breastfeeding women to be vaccinated against covid-19.

 

2. When should I be vaccinated if I’m pregnant?

If you are pregnant and want to be vaccinated, we recommend vaccination from 1st trimester.  

3. How ill will I get if I become infected with covid-19?

Most pregnant women will only experience mild symptoms if they become infected with novel coronavirus. However, some pregnant women may risk becoming more severely ill with covid-19.

Studies from abroad have found that pregnant women who get covid-19 have approximately twice as high a risk of hospitalisation in the intensive care unit. Studies also show that mothers with covid-19 have a 2-3 times higher risk of giving birth prematurely or needing an emergency caesarean. Furthermore, research suggests that there might also be a slightly increased risk of fetal death. The risk of becoming severely ill from covid-¬19 is highest if you also have conditions such as diabetes, asthma, cardiovascular disease, are obese or are older than 35.

 

4. What is known about the efficacy and safety of covid-19 vaccination during pregnancy?

The vaccines against covid-19 are effective and safe for pregnant women. The vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna offer the same protection in pregnant women as they do in everybody else. Furthermore, if you receive an mRNA covid-19 vaccine during pregnancy, you protect your baby from infection by passing high levels of antibodies to your baby.  

There has been no increased risk of miscarriages, malformations or premature births in pregnant women who are vaccinated against covid-19. In the United States, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have safety monitoring systems that closely monitor and capture information about vaccination during pregnancy.  At this time, more than 170,000 pregnant women have enrolled in the registry. Preliminary findings are reassuring and have not identified any safety concerns.

There is no suspicion that the vaccine is transmitted to the foetus via the placenta. 

The health authorities continuously analyse data on the efficacy and safety of the vaccines. There is no indication that vaccination against covid-19 poses an increased risk for either the mother or baby – either short or long term. 

Pregnant women are offered the vaccine in the USA and most countries in Europe. 

 

5. Can vaccination affect my developing fetus?

No, the vaccine is not harmful to a developing baby.

The vaccines are not ‘live’ vaccines and cannot cause infection. When you are vaccinated, your body forms antibodies, and the antibodies transfer from you to your baby across the placenta and help protect your fetus from covid-19.

 

6. Should I be vaccinated if I’m trying to get pregnant or impregnate my partner?

You can be vaccinated if you or your partner is trying to become pregnant/get your partner pregnant. The vaccines do not impact either female or male fertility. 

7. Should I wait to get pregnant if I have just been vaccinated?

No, there is no reason to delay conception.  There is no evidence that covid-19 vaccines cause fertility problems in either women or men. 

8. What are the side effects of the vaccines?

All vaccines can cause side effects – including the vaccines against COVID-19. Pregnant women may have the same side effects as others after vaccination. In the vast majority of cases, the side effects are mild and transient, and we consider the vaccines to be very safe and well documented.

Mild side effects

Most people will experience some soreness at the injection site. Other common side effects include fatigue, headache, muscle and joint pain, chills, a slight fever, and redness and swelling at the insertion site. In general, these side effects are signs that your body's immune system is reacting to the vaccine. You do not need to call your doctor if you experience these mild and transient side effects. Please do not worry if you are not experiencing any side effects - the vaccines will work regardless of whether you have any side effects or not. 

Most post-vaccination side effects occur within the first six weeks of vaccination, and they very rarely occur later. Both Danish and European health authorities monitor the vaccines closely after they are approved – both in terms of how effective they are and how many side effects they cause.

Rare side effects

Very few people get rare side effects such as severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis), which may be caused by, for example, allergies to the additives in the vaccines.

 If you have previously had a severe allergic reaction immediately after being vaccinated or after being injected with a medicinal product, you should contact your doctor before being vaccinated against COVID-19. If you have known allergies to macrogols/PEG/ polyethylene glycol, you should not be vaccinated with the vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna.

Read more about reported side effects for COVID-19 vaccines at Danish Medicines Agency


9. What should I do if my work puts me at increased risk of becoming infected with COVID-19?

Most people at higher risk can go to work as usual if the Danish Health Authority’s guidance on how to prevent infection can be followed. This applies to both fully vaccinated and non-vaccinated persons.

Therefore, as a general rule, you do not need to be transferred to another function or work from home, even if you have contact with many people on a day-to-day basis. This also applies to pregnant women. However, it is important that you talk to your employer about whether some changes should be made in relation to your work tasks or working conditions, so that infection is prevented as much as possible, and you can feel safe when you go to work. If you work in the healthcare, social services or nursing care sector, it is important that you use the protective equipment recommended for the various tasks. If you are at particularly higher risk and, for example, have a combination of risk factors such as certain chronic diseases or conditions, it may be necessary to take special precautions. If necessary, you can contact your treating doctor at the hospital or your own doctor for a specific assessment of your risk at your workplace.

 

Guidance for people at higher risk

 

10. Are other countries also vaccinating pregnant women?

Yes, many other countries either offer or recommend the use of covid-19 vaccines in pregnancy – e.g. Norway, USA, Canada, The Netherlands and Sweden.

See which countries vaccinate pregnant women here

 

I don't want to be vaccinated

1. What if I do not want to be vaccinated?

If you are pregnant or breastfeeding and do not want to be vaccinated against COVID-19, it is essential that you follow the Danish Health Authority’s advice on preventing infection – especially while you are trying to conceive. It is vital that you protect yourself and your baby and reduce the risk of becoming infected.

Learn more

General guidance on how to prevent the spread of infection

Guidance for people at higher risk

Updated 22 DEC 2021