The majority of pregnant women in South Africa will still have to wait for a Covid-19 jab. Chris Bateman takes a look at what we do and do not know about Covid-19 and its impact on pregnant women or those planning to get pregnant, and when it is safest for such women to get vaccinated.
Most pregnant women in South Africa will have to wait at least another month for a potentially life-saving Covid-19 jab.
That is because in terms of the country's vaccination roll-out protocols and progress, unless a pregnant woman is 35 years and older, and/or helping deliver essential government services, she will only be eligible for vaccination from 1 September when the programme opens up to people aged 18 to 35.
Dr Nicholas Crisp, national vaccination roll-out coordinator and Deputy Director-General in the Department of Health, says adding pregnant women to existing special priority groups will be too complicated -- and would take three weeks or more.
"There are no priority groups for any medical conditions and adding pregnant women as a priority group would be too complicated. It's taken that long to set up each of the public sector programmes, so it's basically pointless to add...