Research has indicated that mothers can transmit SARS-CoV-2 to their infants in the perinatal period. However, a study just published in The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health suggests that specific precautions can minimize that risk. The observational cohort study included all neonates born to mothers positive for SARS-CoV-2 at delivery in three New York Presbyterian Hospitals in New York City between March 22 and May 17, 2020. None of the babies born to those 116 mothers tested positive through 14 days of life. Infection control practices included wearing a surgical mask when near the neonate and appropriate hand hygiene before skin-to-skin contact, breastfeeding, and routine care. Infants were either allowed to room-in with the mother in a closed Giraffe isolette or admitted to a dedicated isolation room. All were fed through direct breastfeeding, expressed breast milk, or formula. Sharing this information with pregnant patients, especially if they present with symptoms of COVID-19 or express concern over possible infection of their unborn baby, could have a reassuring effect and set expectations of protective measures likely to be taken in their delivery process.
COVID-19 Might Be Transmitted Perinatally; Here’s What You Need to Tell Pregnant Patients