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Wiser to delay pregnancy during pandemic, opines expert

The World Health Organisation, Indian Council of Medical Research and government health agencies should issue an advisory against women becoming pregnant during the pandemic as it could affect the foetus, said noted virologist Dr T Jacob John, the former head of Virolgy department at CMC Hospital, Vellore.

Wiser to delay pregnancy during pandemic, opines expert
Dr T Jacob John, Virologist


Even if the virus affects the baby’s brain and physical growth, it would be known only after a year. “By which time, it may be too late to offset or overcome such complications,” he said.

“Though it is yet to be proven, postponing pregnancies will lower the load on healthcare providers while ensuring that women will also be able to ensure good heath before they opt to have a child,” he added.

As the placenta, which provides nourishment for the foetus growing inside a pregnant woman, was highly vascular, the virus posed a real danger to the foetus, he said, explaining the reason for his request for such an advisory.

At least 10 per cent of the pregnant women have tested positive for COVID 19, Dr John noted, adding that an advisory would ensure that such dangers were averted and that any unnecessary load on the healthcare system could be prevented.

He also recommended a study by governments to find out whether coronavirus affected newborns.

Such a survey, if undertaken by either Tamil Nadu or India, would be a forerunner for the world, he added.

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