(CNN) – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends pregnant people get a COVID-19 vaccine, said director Dr. Rochelle Walensky on Friday.
Her comment follows a new study that found no safety concerns or safety concerns for their babies in a large group of pregnant people who received the vaccine in the third trimester.
“Therefore, CDC recommends pregnant people get the COVID-19 vaccine,” Walensky said during a COVID-19 briefing at the White House. “We know this is a deeply personal choice and I encourage people to speak to their doctor or primary care provider to find out what is best for them and their baby.”
The online guidelines for CDC vaccines were not updated until early Friday afternoon. The online guidelines said pregnant women might get a COVID-19 vaccine if one is available and vaccination is a personal choice, but didn’t say the vaccine is recommended.
CNN reached out to the CDC for further clarification.
On Wednesday, the New England Journal of Medicine published preliminary results from CDC scientists who found the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines manufactured by Pfizer and Moderna did not pose a serious risk during pregnancy.
Last month, another study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology found that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines are effective in pregnant and breastfeeding women and can pass protective antibodies to newborns.
Clinical trials with the vaccines did not include pregnant individuals, so there was limited data on the safety of vaccination in pregnant individuals and babies. Scientists intend to contact the pregnant individuals in the study to assess the long-term safety of the vaccine during pregnancy
CDC and FDA are lifting recommended hiatus for Johnson & Johnson vaccine
The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration on Friday lifted their recommended break from using Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine.
Authorities recommended the break on April 13 after learning of six cases of rare blood clotting syndrome in women who recently received the vaccine.
“During the hiatus, FDA and CDC medical and scientific teams examined the available data to assess the risk of thrombosis for the cerebral sinuses or CVST (large blood vessels in the brain) and other locations in the body (including but not limited to the large ones) Blood vessels of the abdomen and veins of the legs) along with thrombocytopenia or low platelet counts, “the agencies said in a joint statement.
“The FDA and CDC teams have also been extensively liaising with providers and clinicians to ensure they have been made aware of the potential for these adverse events and these events due to the unique treatment required for these clots and low platelets is able to properly manage and recognize. also known as thrombosis thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), ”the statement said.
The CDC said it had collected reports of 15 such cases, all in women and 13 in women under the age of 50.
Earlier on Friday, the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) had agreed that the vaccine’s benefits outweigh the risks of infrequent blood clots associated with the shot.
The FDA will update the label for the vaccine to advise that women under the age of 50 should be aware of the risk of blood clots from the vaccine.
Walensky said Friday that Johnson & Johnson vaccinations could resume immediately.
“I support the ACIP recommendation to use the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine for those 18 years of age and older in the US population under FDA emergency approval, and I have signed that recommendation,” she said.
The two-dose mRNA vaccines manufactured by Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna are made using a different technology than J & J’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine and have not been linked to rare cases of blood clots.
States, tribes and territories have more than 9 million Johnson & Johnson cans on hand as they wait to see federal health officials lift the J&J hiatus, Jeff Zients, coronavirus advisor to President Joe Biden, told CNN .
New study shows why vaccinating everyone against COVID-19 is essential
Although the feeling is growing that normalcy is within reach after the devastating COVID-19 pandemic, experts continue to urge more vaccinations – especially as new research describes the long-term consequences for those diagnosed with the virus.
In the authors’ largest study to date on long-term effects, researchers at Washington University in St. Louis found that people with COVID-19 appear to be at a much higher risk of death and need more medical care six months after their diagnosis, even if they have one had a milder form of the disease.
“We need to think about the burgeoning health crisis this will cause in the years to come,” said Dr. CNN’s chief correspondent Sanjay Gupta told Anderson Cooper on Thursday.
The US has made progress in vaccinating the public, but tens of millions of Americans haven’t started their vaccinations yet, and experts say the US needs much higher vaccination levels to control the virus. And younger Americans, many of whom were recently eligible for a shot, are less likely than older residents to claim they have been or will be vaccinated, a recent poll found.
But the Washington University study shows what many experts have been saying for much of the past year – you don’t want this virus, Gupta said.
Between one and six months after the illness, patients with COVID-19 had a 60% higher risk of death than those without COVID-19. Patients with COVID-19 were also 20% more likely to need more medical care and medication in the six months after their diagnosis.
Unfortunately, treatment options for long-haul COVID are limited, said Dr. Leana Wen to Cooper. But the good news is that the vaccines can not only prevent infection, but also reduce long-term symptoms, she said.
Gupta said there are still plenty of experts learning about the virus, its treatment, and its effects.
Researchers revise the death toll forecast
According to the latest projection of an influential coronavirus model released by the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, approximately 602,723 Americans will have died from COVID-19 by August 1.
That number is lower than last week’s report when researchers estimated there would be at least 618,000 cumulative deaths on August 1.
The new number explains the increasing spread of vaccines over the next 90 days and the continued spread of virus variant B.1.1.7 in the US.
More than 571,000 people in the United States had died of COVID-19 on Friday night, according to Johns Hopkins University.
The team also released projections for a worst-case scenario where 634,016 Americans could die from coronavirus by August 1.
“In our worse scenario, faster declines in mask use and faster increases in mobility will result in daily deaths rising to nearly 750 per day and staying nearly constant through August 1,” the team said.
The researchers found that the expansion of COVID-19 vaccination in the US and the decline in seasonality were enough to keep deaths from increasing with the spread of variant B.1.1.7, but cautioned against the hesitation of the vaccine .
“Given the centrality of vaccination in the US strategy to control the potential increase in B.1.1.7, the slow erosion of vaccine confidence over the past two months or more is a cause for concern,” the team said.