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Maternal vaccines during the Covid-19 pandemic:A qualitative interview study with UK pregnant women

Authors
  • Anderson, Emma
  • Brigden, Amberly
  • Davies, Anna
  • Shepherd, Emily
  • Ingram, Jenny
Type
Published Article
Journal
Midwifery
Publisher
The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Publication Date
Jun 11, 2021
Volume
100
Pages
103062–103062
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.midw.2021.103062
PMCID: PMC8192261
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
Disciplines
  • Article
License
Unknown

Abstract

Background There is suboptimal uptake of recommended maternal vaccines (pertussis and influenza) during pregnancy in the UK. The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted healthcare services, and potentially vaccine coverage, and brought the need for new vaccines to be tested and rolled out. Objectives To explore: i) the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on pregnant women's access to, and attitudes towards, routine maternal vaccines and; ii) women's attitudes towards testing Covid-19 vaccines on pregnant women and their personal willingness to take part in such a trial. Design Qualitative interview study with pregnant women in the Bristol and surrounding area (UK). Methods Semi-structured telephone/videoconference interviews were conducted (following a topic guide), transcribed verbatim and subjected to thematic analysis. Results Thirty-one pregnant women (selected for demographic range) were interviewed in April/May 2020. Participants felt the pandemic had elevated the importance of routine maternal vaccines, though women were concerned about safety management around appointment attendance. Women were wary of receiving a new Covid-19 vaccine, with most perceiving it as riskier than Covid-19 itself. Conclusions It is important to maximise the safety and efficiency of maternity appointments to encourage uptake of routine maternal vaccines, and to communicate this well. For pregnant women to gain a new vaccine or participate in a vaccine trial, they need to be convinced that the risk posed by the virus is greater than any risk of receiving a new vaccine.

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