Vaccination lowers odds of severe COVID-19 in pregnancy during delta surge
A retrospective cohort study in Obstetrics & Gynecology found that pregnant patients who were vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2 were less likely to have severe COVID-19 or any severity of the disease in the context of the delta variant surge.
“Pregnancy is an independent risk factor for severe COVID-19; however, it is currently unknown whether pregnant patients with breakthrough infection remain at high risk for severe disease,” John A. Morgan, MD, a fellow in the department of maternal-fetal medicine at Ochsner Clinic Foundation, and colleagues wrote.
The researchers reviewed data from 10,092 pregnant patients listed in the Ochsner Health System from June 15 to Aug. 20, and compared the severity of COVID-19 based on vaccination status.
In the primary analysis, they compared disease development in 1,332 fully vaccinated patients to that in 8,760 partially vaccinated and unvaccinated patients. Severe or critical COVID-19 was less likely in the vaccinated group (0.08% vs. 0.66%; adjusted OR = 0.1; 95% CI, 0.01-0.49), as was any severity of COVID-19 (1.1% vs. 3.3%; aOR = 0.31; 95% CI, 0.17-0.51).
The secondary analysis compared 1,536 fully and partially vaccinated patients to unvaccinated patients. Those who had at least one dose of a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine had lower odds of severe disease (0.07% vs. 0.68%; aOR = 0.08; 95% CI, 0.004-0.4) and any disease severity (1.1% vs. 3.3%; aOR = 0.3; 95% CI, 0.17-0.48).
However, the researchers said the vaccination rate among pregnant patients in their health system was low — only 13.2%. Nationwide, vaccine uptake has been slow in this population.
“Unvaccinated status was associated with younger age, current smoking, lower BMI and race,” Morgan and colleagues wrote. “As nationwide efforts to improve vaccination acceptance continue, it is vital for obstetricians and gynecologists to educate vulnerable populations on the potential benefits of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in preventing severe or critical illness.”