Kenya Medical Association raises concern on Covid-19 effects on pregnant women

Doctors warn that pregnant women with the virus are more likely to deliver a still birth or preterm baby.

Medics attend to patients

The Kenya Medical Association has issued a statement in regards to the management of Covid-19 cases in Kenya and made a specific appeal to expectant women.

In the statement released on Friday, August 20, 2021, KMA noted the rise in Covid-19 cases among pregnant mothers.

"The association has noted with great concern the steady increase of Covid-19 positive cases in pregnant women. Data has demonstrated that pregnant women are more likely to have severe Covid disease, including the increased risk of ICU admission and death, especially those in the third trimester of pregnancy, and that still birth and preterm birth is more likely (compared to pregnant women without Covid-19.) Pregnant women with underlying medical conditions are at a higher risk of severe illness.

"KMA reiterates the advisory that pregnant and breastfeeding women should access the Covid-19 vaccines. The benefits outweigh the minimal risk of adverse maternal or fetal effects from the vaccines," the press statement read.

The medical association is also concerned about the increase in reported cases of Covid 19 in our learning institutions. This has led to school closures, absenteeism and a general state of anxiety in the education sector.

They urged the Ministry of Education, in conjunction with the Ministry of Health, to strictly enforce the implementation of the protocols for management of Covid-19 in schools.

The medics insisted that all schools should have comprehensive, professionally managed healthcare systems in place, with proper referral mechanisms, and proper isolation facilities for suspected and confirmed Covid-19 cases.

"The transport sector is a key pillar in our economy. As our passenger services operate at full capacity, we are aware of the potential risk of increased infections, because of reduced social distancing.

"KMA urges all passengers to strictly follow all the laid down procedures, with correct masking and use of hand sanitizer as key components. The transport sector managers should ensure the safety of all travelers by enforcing all laid down protocols," the statement futher read.

The association also lauded the government's efforts to procure vaccines for all citizens. adding that the jabs should be issued to as many health facilities as possible, public, private and faith based, to ensure increased access by the public.

"All Kenyans who qualify should present themselves for vaccination when the vaccines are made available.

"KMA reiterates that all public gatherings and public rallies should remain suspended until we attain at least 60% vaccination of the population. Kenya Medical Association is committed to collaborating and supporting all stake holders in the management of this wave, and the pandemic into the future," the statement concluded.

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