Routine vaccinations during pregnancy: women knowledge and attitude during COVID-19 pandemic era, an Italian survey
Objective. Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTPv) and seasonal Flu (Fv) vaccines are routinely recommended during pregnancy, however, there is still a low compliance to this recommendation. To better understand the underlying reasons for pregnant women poor adherence to this procedure, we evaluated, through a questionnaire-based survey, women knowledge, and attitude toward vaccinations during pregnancy.
Materials and Methods. This was a survey study performed at the Obstetrics and Gynecology Unit of “Pugliese-Ciaccio Hospital,” a tertiary center in Catanzaro (Southern Italy), from September 2020 to February 2021. All consecutive women admitted to the postpartum ward after delivery were invited to participate in the study.
Results. Sixty percent (360/600, 60%) women declared that vaccines are not safe during pregnancy. One third of our study population (190/600, 31.6%) stated that DTPv and anti Fv are those considered to be safe during pregnancy but only 26% (156/600) declared to have received one of them. Among those who got information about this topic (224/600, 37.3%), only 15.8% (38/240) had received them from an obstetric health care professional whereas 46.4% (104/224) got them from Google.
Conclusions. DTPv and Fv are safe and useful tools during pregnancy, however, compliance with this recommendation, is low. A crucial role is played by a lack of appropriate counselling and support from consultant’s obstetrician and/or midwives. Covid 19 pandemic has sensitized the entire population about the topic of prevention and vaccination, therefore, health care professionals should take advantage from that and put strong efforts in implementing counselling strategies and vaccine campaigns.