Vaccination of pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding

Pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding are now eligible for the vaccination against COVID-19. Vaccination is voluntary and free.

Vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are used in Greenland and both are approved as effective and safe vaccines for pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding. They have been approved on the basis of scientific studies and the processing of data about effect and side effects.

The vaccination of pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding is also approved in most other countries in the EU and in the USA.

Recommendations

  • If you are pregnant, it is recommended that you are first vaccinated in your second or third trimester, i.e. from your fourth month of pregnancy. As a precautionary principle, vaccination is not recommended for women who are in the first trimester of their pregnancy, i.e. during the first three months.
  • If you are breastfeeding, you can be vaccinated regardless of how long you have breastfed or regardless of when your child was born.

Vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are used in Greenland and are approved for use in pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding. They provide the same level of protection for pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding as for women who are not pregnant or who are not breastfeeding.

According to the Danish Health Authority there are no indications that there is an increased risk to mothers or their children when they are vaccinated against COVID-19. When the mother is vaccinated, her antibodies will be passed on to the baby through her bloodstream or through her breast milk. However, there is no evidence that the actual vaccine is passed on to the foetus via the placenta or to the child via breast milk.

Like other people when they are vaccinated, pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding can experience side effects when they are vaccinated This also means that for pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding the side effects will usually be mild, for example, fatigue, headache or a slight fever. But like other people when they are vaccinated, in rare cases, pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding may experience serious side effects.

According to the Danish Health Authority there is no increased risk of miscarriage, deformity or premature birth among pregnant women who are vaccinated against COVID-19 and there are no signs of any tendency for worrying side effects.

The health authorities in Greenland monitor the vaccines’ effect and safety data on an ongoing basis.

The vaccination helps to protect against the coronavirus and is important protection for people who are at an increased risk of experiencing serious illness if infected with COVID-19.

Most pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding experience mild symptoms if infected with the coronavirus but a few pregnant women may be at risk of experiencing more serious illness.

According to the Danish Health Authority, studies from outside Denmark show that pregnant women who are ill with COVID-19 are twice as likely to require treatment in intensive care. Studies also show that pregnant women who are ill with COVID-19 have a 2-3 times higher risk of giving birth prematurely or of undergoing an acute caesarean section. The risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 is greatest in people who have for example, diabetes, asthma, cardiovascular disease, are obese or are over 35 years old.

Women who are breastfeeding do not have an increased risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19.

Please find information about vaccination in this booklet:

Information for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding