Covid: Professor Chris Whitty explains the need for vaccination during pregnancy

During the questioning of the Chief Medical Officer by MPs, Whitty got asked whether the Government made a “mistake” by not putting pregnant women into the priority groups sooner. Statistics from August reported that only 22 percent of pregnant women have received their jab. However, one in six of the most critically ill patients are unvaccinated pregnant women.

The Chief Medical Officer explained there is a lot of myths around this and encouraged pregnant women to get vaccinated.

He noted: “We really should have made that point even clearer earlier on, this isn’t a government point but a medical profession point.

“I think there are a lot of myths around this and this is the thing we really need to take on.

“It is not true there are increased risks of this vaccine. What is true is that Covid and pregnancy is a dangerous combination.”


Since July, seriously ill pregnant women, who haven’t had their first jab, have been treated through a special lung bypass machine, the NHS explains.

These women have been given a therapy, called Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO).

This is used when lungs get severely damaged by coronavirus that a ventilator can’t maintain their oxygen levels.

NHS data shows that nearly 20 percent of the most “critically” ill patients from coronavirus are unvaccinated pregnant women.

To which he answered that this is not his area of expertise but he’s seen a “lot of activity on this”.

He added: “Individual practitioners…are doing everything they can to get this message home that vaccination and pregnancy is really important for the safety of the mum.

“And therefore for the long-term benefits of the baby as well.”

Whitty also wants pregnant women to be supported “medically very strongly” during the Omicron outbreak.