COVID-19 Technical Brief for Maternity Services

Publication Date: May 2020

Publisher: UNFPA

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It is anticipated that that COVID-19 (the disease caused by the novel coronavirus named SAR-CoV-2) will occur in most, if not all countries. A key fact about COVID-19 is that the vast majority of infections will result in very mild or no symptoms. Not everybody is at risk of severe disease. Persons of advancing age and those with existing respiratory, cardiac and/or metabolic disorders and immunodeficiencies are at higher risk of moderate to severe disease.

Limited data are available on COVID-19 in pregnancy, but the studies published to date do not show an increased risk of severe disease in late pregnancy or substantial risk to the newborn. Congenital infection has not been found, and the virus has not been detected in expelled products of conception. These findings are reassuring, and are quite different from other recent pandemics, like the 2009 H1N1 influenza A pandemic which resulted in more severe disease in pregnant women, or Zika virus which is teratogenic. Information on the impact of COVID-19 on early pregnancy outcomes remains unavailable at the time of writing. Non-pregnant women of childbearing age are also at low risk of severe disease1.

 

Part 1: Delivery of Facility Based  Maternity Services

Part 2: Antenatal Care Services

Part 3: Postnatal Care Services

 

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