Before Lucia Pizarro-Urbina even knew she was pregnant, she got her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine. Uncertain at the time, whether she should get the second dose, she consulted her doctor.
“I was worried obviously, but I talked to my doctor and he told me absolutely you should get the 2nd shot,” said Pisano-Urbina.
With only a few weeks to go until she is due, Pizarro-Urbina knows she made the right choice to protect herself and her baby from the virus and the latest Delta surge.
But three out of four pregnant women in South Florida have not been vaccinated and doctors at Broward Health Medical Center say many unvaccinated expectant moms are arriving at the hospital very sick.
“Seeing an expectant woman with a healthy baby be unable to breathe and require ventilator support and ICU admission is something I’ve never seen at this frequency,” said Dr. Mary-Beatrice Squire, OBGYN at Broward Health Coral Springs.
In a handful of cases doctors have had to deliver babies premature, to save mother and child, but in one tragic case, a mother passed away.
“We recently had a maternal death and that’s awful for the family, for everyone. This baby will never know his mother, and she never saw her child and that’s so sad and it should never happen,” said Dr. Adolfo Gonzalez-Garcia, OBGYN at Broward Health Medical Center.
Thankfully, the child survived.
Heartbroken, doctors are urging all pregnant women to get the vaccine. They say 70,000 pregnant women across the country have been fully vaccinated and went on to deliver healthy babies.
“This vaccine is safe, all vaccines that have been approved are safe during pregnancy to receive during any trimester. I urge and strongly recommend that you receive that vaccine,” said Dr. Squire.
“I want to be as healthy as possible for my 6-year-old, for my husband and for my baby,” said Pizaro-Urbina.
Memorial Healthcare System is reporting a similar increase in unvaccinated pregnant women coming to the hospital with severe COVID-19 cases.
Memorial also urges women to get vaccinated, saying it is safe to do at any time during pregnancy.