WHAT IS COVID-19?
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. Patients with COVID-19 have experienced mild to severe respiratory illness, i ncluding fever, cough and shortness of breath. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a novel (new) coronavirus. It is not the same as other types of coronaviruses that commonly circulate among people and cause mild illness, like the common cold.
HOW DOES COVID-19 SPREAD?
The virus that causes COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person, between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
WHAT IS THE RISK TO PREGNANT WOMEN OF GETTING COVID-19?
We do not currently know if pregnant women have a greater chance of getting sick from COVID-19 than the general public nor whether they are more likely to have serious illness as a result. Pregnant women experience changes in their bodies that may increase their risk of some infections. With viruses from the same family as COVID-19, and other viral respiratory infections, such as influenza, women have had a higher risk of developing a severe illness. It is always important for pregnant women to protect themselves from illnesses.
DOES COVID-19 POSE A HIGHER RISK FOR PREGNANT AND POSTPARTUM WOMEN?
CAN COVID-19 CAUSE PROBLEMS FOR A PREGNANCY?
We do not know at this time if COVID-19 would cause problems during pregnancy or affect the health of the baby after birth. If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, call your OBGYN to assess these symptoms and advise if any additional precautions for pregnancy are needed.
HOW CAN PREGNANT WOMEN PROTECT THEMSELVES FROM GETTING COVID-19?
Pregnant women should do the same things as the general public to avoid infection. You can help stop the spread of COVID-19 by taking these actions:
You can find additional information on preventing COVID-19 disease at CDC's (Prevention for 2019 Novel Coronavirus).
CAN COVID-19 BE PASSED FROM A PREGNANT WOMAN TO THE FETUS OR NEWBORN?
We still do not know if a pregnant woman with COVID-19 can pass the virus that causes COVID-19 to her fetus or baby during pregnancy or delivery. No infants born to mothers with COVID-19 have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. In these cases, which are a small number, the virus was not found in samples of amniotic fluid or breastmilk.
IF A PREGNANT WOMAN HAS COVID-19 DURING PREGNANCY, WILL IT HURT THE BABY?
We do not know at this time what if any risk is posed to infants of a pregnant woman who has COVID-19. There have been a small number of reported problems with pregnancy or delivery (e.g. preterm birth) in babies born to mothers who tested positive for COVID-19 during their pregnancy. However, it is not clear that these outcomes were related to maternal infection.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I'M EXPERIENCING SYMPTOMS?
If you are experiencing symptoms of acute respiratory illness, follow the recommended CDC guidelines:
The ISDH call center for healthcare providers and members of the public who have concerns about COVID-19 is now staffed 24/7 at 877-826-0011.Additional information and resources for COVID-19 are available at the links below.