Expecting a baby during the best of times can have its stressful moments. Add a scary world-wide quarantine to that experience, and you can guarantee a lot of concerned expectant moms.
Dr. Leon Lewis, a Board Certified OB/GYN at Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children, shares medical advice with us about being pregnant during COVID-19 and the process of delivering a baby during a global pandemic here in Huntsville.
A Response from a Physician About Being Pregnant During Covid-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every aspect of humanity. Many expectant women have questions regarding the well-being of their unborn child and may be experiencing increased levels of anxiety during this crisis. The medical community is working diligently to navigate this complex crisis. Rest assured that steps are in place to ensure that pregnancy continues to be safe.
While there is limited data available, research studies suggest that pregnant women do not have an increased risk of acquiring COVID-19 compared to non-pregnant women. Studies have also shown that pregnancy does not increase the severity of this disease. No vertical transmission of the virus to the fetus has been shown at this time. And, there is no evidence of transmission of the virus in the milk of breastfeeding mothers. Many studies are ongoing, and the medical community eagerly awaits these results.
Doctor recommendations if you’re pregnant during the COVID-19 pandemic
The current recommendations in place – social distancing, hand washing and leaving home only for essential reasons – appear to be working and it is highly recommended that these practices continue. Pregnant women who are classified as “essential workers” may continue to work, but with the ‘social distancing’ precaution in place.
Evidence has shown that wearing a face mask, whether homemade, a bandana or anything of the sort, does offer some protection.
Labor & delivery in Huntsville during the pandemic
Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children remains the safest environment to manage any and all pregnancy-related complications and deliveries. Many changes have been implemented to contain the spread of the virus while still providing excellent care for all patients. For example, limiting one support person for each pregnant woman and instituting a very strict temperature screening for every individual who enters the hospital are just a few of the changes that have come about.
Women who need to be hospitalized should know that our hospital is still the safest environment for any delivery. We are committed to providing the very best care for all patients. Pregnant women should depend on their obstetrician as a resource for answering questions and addressing concerns during this crisis.
We are all confident that we will succeed in the control of this deadly disease.
Everyone should continue being vigilant and recognize that we all play a vital role in flattening the curve. We are all in this together. The health of you and your baby are of utmost importance to us.
Leon W. Lewis, M.D., F.A.C.O.G.
Board Certified OB/GYN.
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