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Dr. Melanie Barrett

UPDATE ON COVID-19 & MATERNAL HEALTH

March 27, 2020

SUPPORT FOR PEOPLE IN LABOR DURING COVID-19

COVID-19 is having significant impact on labor and delivery practices and policies, with some hospitals restricting visitors and support people in an effort to protect women and their infants. This is a quickly-evolving issue; here are some thoughts and position statements as of Friday, March 27.

TWO STUDIES RELATED TO COVID-19 AND PREGNANCY

PRIORITY: Pregnancy Coronavirus Outcomes Registry

Researchers at the University of California at San Francisco have launched a nationwide study of pregnant or recently pregnant women who are either under investigation for or have been confirmed to have COVID-19.

MotherToBaby: COVID-19 in Pregnancy Study

MotherToBaby and OTIS (Organization of Teratology Information Specialists) have launched a study to examine the short and long-term effects of COVID-19 in pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Dr. Melanie Barrett

THE BEST SOURCE OF INFORMATION

The Centers for Disease Control Website
The CDC website is accurate, up-to-date, easy to understand and navigate.

Important pages on the CDC WEBSITE include:

By going straight to the CDC website, you can bypass the main CORONAVIRUS webpage, which basically just provides links to the CDC.

The one important link from the main page is to FEMA’s Rumor Control page.

THE BEST ARTICLE ABOUT COVID-19 AND MATERNAL HEALTH

“Pregnant and Worried Amid COVID?” from Yale Medicine

This ARTICLE summarizes concerns about how COVID-19 is impacting women who are pregnant or breastfeeding in Q&A format. Here are the key points:

Are pregnant women more likely to become infected with COVID-19?

No, the experience in China does not show that pregnant women are at a greater risk for contracting COVID-19 or at greater risk for severe illness compared to non-pregnant people the same age.

Can I pass COVID-19 to my fetus during pregnancy?

Although there is limited information at this point, published data in scientific journals so far is optimistic and does not show that COVID-19 can be passed from mother to baby during pregnancy. At this point, there is no data on the effects of COVID-19 in early pregnancy, but other coronaviruses have not been transmitted to or caused abnormalities in developing fetuses.

Can COVID-19 be transmitted during breastfeeding?

To date, there is no data to suggest that the virus can be passed to the baby through breast milk. Moreover, breast milk remains the best source of nutrition and protection against many illnesses.

However, a mother who tested positive for COVID-19 can transmit the virus through respiratory droplets or during direct contact. As a result, direct skin-to-skin contact is discouraged. Expressing breast milk with a manual or electric breast pump, then feeding to the infant by a healthy care provider using proper hand hygiene and clean bottles, is the preferred method of feeding the infant breast milk until the COVID-19 infection is resolved.

Dr. Rachel Dalthorp

American Psychiatric Association

Provides timely and authoritative resources for psychiatrists, families, and healthcare and community leaders.
Dr. Melanie Barrett

American Psychological Association

Offers resources for preparedness and safety, along with info for practitioners, educators, caregivers.
Dr. Baili Reichenberger

Anxiety & Depression Association of America

Provides daily updates with blog posts, videos, and suggestions for managing anxiety during COVID-19.
Dr. Rachel Dalthorp

Mental Health America

Lists great information about tools, webinars, workshops — along with specific resources for teens, parents, elders, LGBTQ+, and veterans.
Dr. Melanie Barrett

March of Dimes

Offers information specifically for moms (including pregnant women) and babies.

Learn about the MoD’s Mom & Baby COVID-19 Intervention and Support Fund.

Dr. Baili Reichenberger

MotherToBaby

Provides a fact-sheet for COVID-19 during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Has launched the first

study examining the impact of COVID-19 during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Dr. Baili Reichenberger

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Provides guidance and resources for states, communities, providers, and individuals.