COVID-19 vaccines are safe if you are, or plan to become pregnant

You can safely get the COVID-19 vaccine before becoming pregnant or in any trimester of pregnancy. It is important that you stay up to date with your vaccines and receive all recommended doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, including booster doses.

The benefits of getting vaccinated in pregnancy far outweigh the risks. Not only will the vaccine protect you from COVID-19 infection, but it will reduce the risk of severe illness and complications related to COVID-19 infections in pregnancy. And, studies suggest the antibodies your body develops following vaccination can pass to your baby, which may help provide protection after birth.

Getting the COVID-19 vaccine while you’re pregnant, breastfeeding or trying to conceive is safe, effective and highly recommended by:

  • the Provincial Council for Maternal and Child Health (PCMCH)
  • Ontario Society of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists (OSOG)
  • the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada (SOGC)
  • National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI)
  • many other national and international organizations

Several studies have demonstrated that vaccination in pregnancy has no impact on:

  • pregnancy outcomes (including miscarriage, premature birth, fetal growth restriction and high blood pressure during pregnancy)
  • medical complications of pregnancy
  • maternal death

Read the Provincial Council for Maternal and Child Health’s information sheet on COVID19 vaccines to help you make an informed choice about whether to get the COVID19 vaccine.

Risks related to COVID-19 during pregnancy

COVID-19 infection during pregnancy increases the risk of medical complications and death.

If you contract COVID-19 during your pregnancy, you are:footnote 1:

  • more likely to be hospitalized
  • more likely to be admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU)
  • more likely to suffer from severe illness
  • more likely to require ventilation/life support breathing

In addition, COVID-19 infection in pregnancy significantly increases the risk of:

  • stillbirth
  • premature birth
  • high blood pressure
  • caesarean delivery
  • low birth weight

There is also an increased risk that the baby will need to be admitted to the neonatal intensive care.

COVID-19 vaccines are safe if you are, or plan to begin, breastfeeding

It is safe to get the COVID-19 vaccine while breastfeeding. There is no need to stop or delay breastfeeding after getting vaccinated. Studies show that receiving a COVID-19 vaccine while breastfeeding will not disrupt your breastfeeding and will not have an adverse impact on your baby.

Vaccines protect you from COVID-19 infection and help prevent you from passing it to your baby or other family members. If you get vaccinated while breastfeeding, the vaccine itself will not transfer into breastmilk, but studies suggest that the antibodies you produce following vaccination which may help protect your child from COVID-19.

COVID-19 vaccines and fertility

COVID-19 vaccines do not cause infertility.

In fact, getting all recommended doses of the COVID-19 vaccine before you conceive will help protect you and your future baby from the risk of COVID-19 in pregnancy.

Vaccine ingredients

The COVID-19 vaccine does NOT contain any live virus or any mercury, aluminum, formaldehyde, or any substances harmful to you and/or baby, or any human and/or animal blood or by product(s).

The vaccine cannot give you COVID-19

You cannot get COVID-19 or any other infectious disease from the vaccine because there is no live virus in the vaccine.

Learn more about vaccine safety.

Get more information

Speak to your health care provider if you have questions or would like to discuss if COVID-19 vaccination is right for you.

You can also contact:

  • the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre to speak to an experienced agent or health specialist at 1-833-943-3900 (TTY for people who are deaf, hearing-impaired or speech-impaired: 1-866-797-0007), available 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. in more than 300 languages
  • the VaxFacts Clinic to speak with a qualified Scarborough Health Network doctor at www.shn.ca/vaxfacts or 416-438-2911 ext. 5738
  • the Hospital for Sick Children’s SickKids Vaccine Consult Service to book an appointment with a trusted health-care professional from SickKids to answer your questions and help you make informed decisions about vaccination at Vaccine Consult Service or 437-881-3505