Coronavirus: Pregnant women can pass COVID-19 to their babies, study says

A study of 33 Chinese women who contracted COVID-19 during pregnancy reports that three women passed it on to their babies.

The three infants survived, the study published Thursday in the medical journal JAMA Pediatrics reported.

One of the babies who tested positive for the new coronavirus was born early because its mother was suffering from pneumonia caused by the COVID-19 virus. The baby was delivered after 33 weeks and was in respiratory distress at birth and had to be resuscitated.

According to the study, the other two infants had fevers and one had a bout of vomiting, but otherwise suffered mild symptoms from the virus.

“Because strict infection control and prevention procedures were implemented during the delivery, it is likely that the sources of SARS-CoV-2 in the neonates ... were maternal in origin,” the study read. “It is crucial to screen pregnant women and implement strict infection control measures, quarantine of infected mothers, and close monitoring of neonates at risk of COVID-19.”

Some researchers have suggested that transmission might be happening during the birth process.

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