Despite well-documented evidence of the efficacy, safety and benefits of maternal immunization and the recommendations of healthcare providers, many pregnant women do not receive essential vaccines that protect their babies against influenza, tetanus, diphtheria and whooping cough (Tdap). Only 40.3 percent of pregnant women in 2019–2020 received both flu and Tdap vaccines, and rates were far lower in some populations due to racial and ethnic coverage disparities. Without these critical vaccines, mothers and their babies are left unprotected to potentially life-threatening complications should they contract such a disease. Despite ongoing effort to increase education about the importance of maternal immunization rates, they still remain low.

A new white paper, Improving Maternal Immunization Status: Working Toward Solutions to the Policy, Data, and Implementation Challenges Driving Suboptimal U.S. Maternal Vaccination Rates, provides a better understanding of the factors that may be contributing to continued maternal immunization challenges.

White paper authors include HealthyWomen, along with the following organizations: Adult Vaccine Access Coalition, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Public Health Association, AHIP, Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs, Association of Women’s Health, Obstetrics and Neonatal Nurses, Immunization Action Coalition, March of Dimes, National Association of Hispanic Nurses, National Black Nurses Association, National Coalition for Infant Health, National Minority Quality Forum, Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, and Vaccinate Your Family.

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