COVID-19 During Pregnancy and Postpartum

A pregnant woman outside, wearing a facemask.NICHD aims to improve understanding of the effects of COVID-19 infection and disease during pregnancy, in the postpartum period, during lactation, and in newborns. This focus includes making sure that any COVID-related treatments and vaccines are adequately formulated and tested for the specific needs of pregnant and lactating people. Among its efforts are co-leading, with the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the Trans-NIH COVID-19 Workgroup on Pregnant & Lactating Women and Children, which coordinates NIH’s Strategic Response Activities for these populations.

Some NICHD research activities on COVID during pregnancy and postpartum include the following :

NICHD Director Diana W. Bianchi, M.D., led the call for inclusion of pregnant and lactating people in COVID-19 vaccine research in a Director’s Corner.

Dr. Bianchi also used her Director’s Corner to discuss NIH-wide efforts to understand Post-Acute Sequelae of COVID (PASC), long-term effects of infection that persist after a person should feel better. NICHD will be studying pregnant and postpartum people who are among these so-called “COVID long haulers.”

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