October 05, 2021
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Disclosure: Perez reports that he works in the Bayer Pharmaceuticals speaker office. The other authors do not report any relevant financial information.
Most obstetric patients in a single facility were offered COVID-19 vaccination, and although vaccine intake was low, researchers said the vaccination rate at discharge was 50% higher than at admission.
In-patient vaccination, in particular, can improve health inequalities.
“The availability of COVID-19 vaccination during an obstetric hospitalization for delivery can increase vaccination options, especially for patients who have disproportionately poorer outcomes from COVID-19.” Marta J. Perez, MD, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Healio said.
Perez and colleagues conducted a retrospective cohort study published in Obstetrics & Gynecology, which studied all obstetric patients in a single facility between 1. Of the 329 deliveries, 75 (22.8%) patients were vaccinated before admission and five (1.5%) were ineligible for vaccination because they were active Had COVID-19. Of the remaining 249 patients, 221 (88.8%) were offered vaccination. The hospital offered obstetrician vaccination counseling to increase vaccination rates for patients.
Of the eligible patients, 52 (23.5%) were offered and accepted vaccination and 43 received the vaccine.
“Six of the nine patients who requested but did not receive a vaccination were discharged over the weekend when vaccination was not available. There was no explanation in the medical record for the other three patients, ”wrote Perez and colleagues.
The researchers compared characteristics of patients vaccinated before admission with characteristics of patients vaccinated during their hospital stay. Patients vaccinated prior to admission (n = 75; mean age 32 years) were more likely to be white (80%), nulliparous (47%) and with health insurance (80%) compared to in-hospital vaccinated patients (n = 43; mean age 30 years) who were more likely to have been black (58%), have statutory health insurance (61%), have a hypertensive pregnancy disorder (54%) and in areas with a higher Area Deprivation Index (P. <.001>
“It is important that inpatient vaccination can improve the health equality of obstetric patients,” wrote Perez and colleagues. “Patients who were vaccinated on admission were more likely to come from groups with greater health disparities in both COVID-19 acquisition and vaccination access, in addition to higher rates of comorbidities that increase the risk of serious illness.”
According to the researchers, the proportion of patients vaccinated at discharge was 50% higher than at admission, suggesting that resources provided by hospitals, such as vaccine availability and vaccination advice from an obstetrician, may affect vaccination numbers.
“This study should encourage clinicians to work with hospital pharmacies to make COVID-19 vaccinations available to inpatients inpatients,” Perez told Healio. “These results complement the previous literature, which shows that the availability of vaccines and advice to obstetrical teams in the field of obstetrics can increase vaccination rates in pregnant populations.”
The CDC encourages pregnant and breastfeeding women to get vaccinated against COVID-19, and the data shows the vaccines are safe.