If you are pregnant, you should get your COVID-19 vaccine when it's offered to you. Being vaccinated will reduce the chance of you becoming very unwell.
It may also reduce the chance of complications during pregnancy, such as premature labour. This can happen if you are seriously ill with COVID-19 (coronavirus).
The COVID-19 vaccines are new. We are still learning about the safety of them during pregnancy. The vaccines were not tested on pregnant women.
But the information we have so far shows that the COVID-19 vaccines do not have any negative effect on babies in the womb. They are not live vaccines, so they cannot infect either mother or baby with COVID-19. The vaccines are rapidly broken down in the body and cannot become part of your or your baby’s DNA.
COVID-19 vaccine doses
When you get your COVID-19 vaccine, you will need 2 doses.
The first dose should be at or after 14 weeks of pregnancy.
The second dose should be before the end of 33 weeks of pregnancy.
If the second dose is not given by the end of 33 weeks, it should be delayed until after you have your baby. This is because you may get a fever after the second dose.
Like all medicines, vaccines can cause side effects. Most of these are mild to moderate and short-term. Not everyone gets side effects.
Read about potential side effects after the:
- Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine
- AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine
- Moderna COVID-19 vaccine
- Janssen COVID-19 vaccine
Pregnant women who are at high risk
You should talk to your obstetrician or GP about getting your COVID-19 vaccine if you are:
- a pregnant healthcare worker
- at higher risk from COVID-19
Getting pregnant after your COVID-19 vaccine
You do not need to leave any gap between having your COVID-19 vaccine and getting pregnant.
If you get pregnant after the first dose
If you get pregnant after the first dose of your COVID-19 vaccine, you should wait until 14 weeks or after to get the second dose.
Do not worry if you get your vaccine before knowing you are pregnant. You should wait until 14 weeks or after to get your vaccine as a precaution. This is to avoid any possible association with a miscarriage.
Other vaccines during pregnancy
You will need other vaccines during pregnancy. These are:
- whooping cough (pertussis)
- flu - if you are pregnant during the flu season from October to the end of April
Leave a gap of 14 days between your COVID-19 vaccination and any other vaccine.
There is no evidence that COVID-19 vaccination affects fertility.
You do not need to leave any gap after having your COVID-19 vaccine and trying to conceive or to have fertility treatment such as IVF. But you may want to delay trying to conceive or having fertility treatment until you are fully vaccinated. This is because you may get a fever in the 48 hours following your vaccine, especially the second dose.
Breastfeeding after your COVID-19 vaccine
The COVID-19 vaccines have not been tested on breastfeeding women. But there is no known reason to avoid breastfeeding if you are vaccinated.
Last updated: 9 April at 3.40pm