Health officials warn pregnant women to get flu and whooping cough vaccine

Local News

Despite the seriousness of influenza less than half of pregnant women in the United States are getting the flu, and whooping cough shot, both of which protect not only the mother from getting infected, but also her unborn child.

Dr. Sam Fox at OSF Healthcare St. Mary Medical Center’s Galesburg Clinic says, “The CDC is worried that the amount of people getting their flu shot has gone down dramatically.”

The CDC reports 1 in 3 U.S. pregnant women receive both flu, and whooping cough vaccines, while 35 percent of expected mothers skipped out on the shots.

Dr. Fox says, “It is alarming when you hear that number because it is so big. I think misinformation about the flu shot, is probably the number one reason I hear why women don’t want to get the flu shot.”

He says that’s the reason he wants to educate women who believe myths about vaccines harming them.

“Women or people or individuals feel if they get the flu shot, they are going to get the flu, and that certainly is not the case in the scientific literature. So we try to explain to them that the flu vaccine is a dead virus, and can not cause an infection in a human.”

He says the vaccinations have no effects on your unborn child or infant afterwards.

“By not having the flu vaccination, you’re causing you’re causing your infant more harm, because they are not able to get vaccinated into six months or older.”

Health experts want expectant mothers to know the flu vaccines are safe for them.

“People that have gotten the flu vaccination if they were to get exposed to another flu strain, their bodies tend to fight it off better than the people who have not gotten it.”

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