Go for Covid-19 vaccine, doctors now tell pregnant and breastfeeding women

The Kenya Medical Association is encouraging expectant and breastfeeding mothers to be vaccinated against Covid-19.

The advisory follows a reported spike of infections amongst this critical part of the Kenyan statistics.

KMA said in a press release Friday that, “pregnant and breastfeeding women should access the Covid-19 vaccines. The benefits outweigh the minimal risk of adverse maternal or fetal effects from the vaccines.”

The statement that was signed by KMA President, Were Onyino, said that data had demonstrated that pregnant women are more likely to have severe effects of Covid-19.

This includes increased risk of ICU admission and death, especially those in the third trimester of pregnancy, and that still birth and preterm birth is more likely (compared to pregnant women without Covid-19).

“KMA is also concerned about the increase in reported cases of Covid-19 in our learning institutions,” Dr Onyino said, adding that the scenario had precipitated absenteeism in some schools and anxiety across the country.

He urged the Ministry of Education in conjunction with the Ministry of Health to strictly enforce the implementation of the protocols for management of the pandemic in schools.

“KMA insists that all schools should have comprehensive, professionally managed healthcare systems in place, with proper referral mechanisms, and proper isolation facilities for suspected Covid-19 cases,” the statement said.

“KMA members are available and willing to guide in this area, so that our schools remain safe places for learning.”

The doctors also noted that following the relaxation of protocols for public transport vehicles to carry passengers to full capacity, there were fears that this could trigger more infections on Kenyan roads because of reduced social distancing.

“KMA urges all passengers to strictly follow all the laid down procedures, with correct masking and use of hand sanitizers as key components,” the statement further said.

“Transport sector managers should ensure the safety of all travellers by enforcing all laid down protocols.”

The association lauded the government for striving to avail vaccines in the country and urged Kenyans to go for the critical jabs.

“…all public gatherings and public rallies should remain suspended until we attain at least 60% vaccination of the population,” KMA said.

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Mr. Araka is the pioneer reporter and editor at The Scholar. His satirical segment, The Idler's Corner is very popular with our readers. He is also a published novelist and biographer.


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