COVID-19 vaccine and pregnancy FAQs

I am pregnant and plan to breastfeed, should I get the vaccine?

COVID vaccination in pregnancy is considered safe and is recommended by the Royal College of Obstetricians, Royal College of Midwives and the UK Tetralogy Service.

It's preferable for you to have the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine because they've been more widely used during pregnancy in other countries and have not caused any safety issues.

You can also have the COVID-19 vaccine if you're breastfeeding. Speak to a healthcare professional before you have the vaccination. They will discuss the benefits and risks with you.

The vaccine cannot give you or your baby COVID-19.

Read the latest COVID-19 vaccine advice if you're pregnant, may get pregnant or are breastfeeding on GOV.UK

Two experts from Liverpool Women’s Hospital have also put the following short video together to provide some reassurance on issues relating to fertility and pregnancy. You can hear from Alice Bird (Consultant Obstetrician) and Andrew Drakeley (Consultant Gynaecologist and Clinical Director for the Hewitt Fertility Centre) in a short 3 minute video here.

Dr Alice Bird, a Consultant Obstetrician at Liverpool Women’s, talks about the COVID-19 vaccine and pregnancy in this short video.


Does the vaccine affect my fertility?

There's no evidence that the COVID-19 vaccine has any effect on your chances of becoming pregnant. There's no need to avoid pregnancy after vaccination.

Advice for women trying to become pregnant can be found on the GOV.UK website here.

If you are concerned about the impact of the vaccine on fertility, please click here to see the latest advice from the Royal College of Midwives and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.

For advice to people currently undergoing or considering fertility treatment please see the following advice from the local Hewitt Fertility Centre here.

You can see a short video that provide some reassurance on issues relating to fertility and pregnancy from two experts from Liverpool Women’s Hospital - Alice Bird (Consultant Obstetrician) and Andrew Drakeley (Consultant Gynaecologist and Clinical Director for the Hewitt Fertility Centre) - here.

Click here for government guidance on COVID-19 vaccination for women of childbearing age, currently pregnant or breastfeeding.

I’m pregnant, how can I get the COVID-19 vaccine?

You can book yourself an appointment through the National Booking Service, or you can attend a walk-in session at a vaccination centre without an appointment if you prefer.  


Can I get the booster if I am pregnant?

If you are pregnant and in one of the groups that the JCVI has recommended for the boosters, you are eligible to receive a booster, no earlier than six months after completion of the first course of vaccination. The NHS will contact you when it is your turn.

Is COVID-19 disease serious in pregnancy?

Although the overall risk from Covid-19 disease in pregnant women and their new babies is low, in later pregnancy some women may become seriously unwell and need hospital treatment.

Pregnant women with Covid-19 have a higher risk of intensive care admission than women of the same age who are not pregnant. Women with Covid-19 are also two to three times more likely to have their babies early than women who do not have the illness.

Recent data showed that pregnant women who have underlying clinical conditions, have a BMI over 20, are from a black or minority ethnic background and are over 35 have an even higher risk of suffering serious complications from Covid-19.

Which vaccines are available to pregnant women?

Pregnant women are being offered the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, because they’ve been more widely used during pregnancy in other countries.

There have been over 90,000 Covid-19 vaccinations in pregnancy in England and Scotland, and a further 160,000 in the US, with no specific concerns raised about safety so far and no subsequent harm to the baby.

None of the vaccines available in England contain live coronavirus, so they cannot infect you or your baby.

There is no evidence so far to suggest that any Covid-19 vaccines used in England are unsafe for pregnant women, and there is no evidence that they will cause any problems for women wanting to become pregnant in the future.

I’m pregnant and have already had my first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine. Should I have my second dose?

It is recommended that women receive the same vaccine for both doses.

If you have already received a first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine and didn’t experience any serious side effects, then you should continue to receive a second dose. Serious side effects from this vaccine are thankfully very rare and even less likely in the second dose.


I’m breastfeeding, can I have the vaccine?

If you are breastfeeding, you can receive any of the Covid-19 vaccines available. You do not need to stop breastfeeding when you get the vaccine. None of the vaccines contain virus that can reproduce inside your body or spread to your breastmilk. You should be reassured that by receiving the vaccine, you are protecting yourself while continuing to provide your baby with the benefits of breastfeeding.

Will the vaccine give me or my baby COVID-19?

You cannot get Covid-19 from the vaccines because they do not contain live coronavirus. There are no additional ingredients that are harmful to pregnant women or their babies in the vaccine.


Can I try for a baby after being vaccinated?

If you are trying to conceive, this should not affect your decision about vaccination.

There is no evidence that the vaccines cause problems with fertility, or that they will cause any problems for women wanting to become pregnant now or in the future.

Where can I find more information?

For more information, the UK Health Security Agency (formerly Public Health England) has produced a helpful guide to Covid-19 vaccination for all women of childbearing age. This is available on their website.

The Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and the Royal College of Midwives have also produced information to help you make an informed choice about getting vaccinated.