Dominique Dimeglio's pregnancy is considered high-risk, but she still had no plans to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
"I actually wasn’t going to get it all, and my family wasn’t going to get vaccinated either,” the South Florida expecting mother said.
Dimeglio — who was diagnosed with HELLP syndrome during her first pregnancy and delivered her baby prematurely — spoke with her doctor, who introduced her to Dr. Hala Bunni, a board-certified OBGYN at Northwest Medical Center in Margate.
“I have seen many pregnant women here with COVID and they don’t do well and wind up in ICU," Dr. Bunni said.
Get South Florida local news, weather forecasts and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC South Florida newsletters.
Dr. Bunni says she tries to reassure patients by her own experience — she also got vaccinated while pregnant.
"Her experience definitely helped, her being a doctor, being pregnant, getting vaccinated," Dimeglio said.
Dr. Bunni says many of her patients are hesitant to get the vaccine — most of them fearful of any impact the shot may have on their baby or their pregnancy.
"The CDC has V-safe pregnancy registry program that has been started where there's over 94,000 who received the vaccine while pregnant and did not have any issues," she said.
Dr. Bunni says the risk of not getting the vaccine far outweighs the risk of getting the shot.
“I think patients who are pregnant really need to take into consideration pregnancy is a high-risk state and COVID in pregnancy can have more detrimental outcomes,” she said.
And now she's hoping more patients who are on the fence -- like Dimeglio -- will change their minds as well.
“For me, it was a safer option to get vaccinated than to take the risk of getting COVID and being severely sick and not being here for my children, or not being here at all,” Dimeglio said.
Dimeglio says her husband -- who also had no plans to get the vaccine -- will also get the shot as well, citing the rapid spread charged by the new Delta variant.