No Need For Lactating Women To Stop Breastfeeding Post COVID-19 Vaccination: Centre

NITI Aayog member VK Paul said there is no reason for lactating women to stop breastfeeding after being vaccinated for COVID-19.

Ritika Joshi
New Update
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The Central Government said there should be no disruption in breastfeeding for lactating women who took the COVID-19 vaccine. The Centre had recently allowed lactating women to take the vaccine.

Misleading claims said that mothers who took the COVID-19 vaccine should not breastfeed their newborns after vaccination. People believed that breastfeeding should be halted for 1 to 2 days.

The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog member VK Paul said there is no reason to stop breastfeeding after being vaccinated for COVID-19. Paul said that “In no situation, breastfeeding should be halted for even an hour”.

Pregnant women and lactating women had been excluded from the vaccination program as Covishield and Covaxin had not been tested for them. The government’s expert group approved pregnant and lactating women for COVID-19 vaccination. The group said that it is safe for breastfeeding women to get vaccinated, and pregnant women can be given the option between the vaccines.

The Centre approved COVID-19 vaccination for breastfeeding mothers and said that more deliberations are required before a decision is made for pregnant women. COVID-19 cannot be spread from a mother to her child through breastmilk. However, doctors advised face shields or face masks for breastfeeding mothers since COVID-19 can be transmitted through respiratory droplets.

Dr Bhagya Lakshi, Yashoda Hospital, Hyderabad according to a media report that “There is no evidence that the vaccine can lead to any defect in the baby”.

Dr Kishore Kumar, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Bengaluru according to an Indian Express report said that lactating women should be vaccinated. “There are no risks for vaccinating breastfeeding mothers. The antibodies could pass to the babies as well and it may offer immunity to the baby also like other vaccines given in pregnancy,” said Kumar. He also said that there is no data that says that the COVID-19 vaccination will have an impact on breastfeeding.

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