‘The best decision’: B.C. mom encourages other pregnant women to get COVID-19 shot

Meghan Gilley, a 35-year-old emergency room doctor and new mom was vaccinated from COVID-19 in January, while she was pregnant. She’s encouraging others to do the same. (Submitted)Meghan Gilley, a 35-year-old emergency room doctor and new mom was vaccinated from COVID-19 in January, while she was pregnant. She’s encouraging others to do the same. (Submitted)
Meghan Gilley, a 35-year-old emergency room doctor and new mom was vaccinated from COVID-19 in January, while she was pregnant. She’s encouraging others to do the same. (Submitted)Meghan Gilley, a 35-year-old emergency room doctor and new mom was vaccinated from COVID-19 in January, while she was pregnant. She’s encouraging others to do the same. (Submitted)
Meghan Gilley, a 35-year-old emergency room doctor and new mom was vaccinated from COVID-19 in January, while she was pregnant. She’s encouraging others to do the same. (Submitted)Meghan Gilley, a 35-year-old emergency room doctor and new mom was vaccinated from COVID-19 in January, while she was pregnant. She’s encouraging others to do the same. (Submitted)

Now that they’re eligible, a doctor in Vancouver is encouraging soon-to-be moms in B.C. to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as she did.

“It was the best decision for me as well as my baby,” 35-year-old Meghan Gilley said.

At six months pregnant, the BC Children’s Hospital emergency room doctor was inoculated with a Pfizer-BioNTech dose among other health-care workers at a Provincial Health Services authority clinic this January.

For her, the proven risk of becoming more ill from COVID-19 because she was pregnant was more worrisome than the potential side effects of a vaccine.

“I had a slightly sore arm after the first shot but didn’t feel unwell,” she said.

RELATED: Pregnant women in B.C. now eligible for COVID-19 vaccine

She received her second dose the same month her son Henry was to be born.

“My arm was sore after and I was perhaps a little more tired the next day but it’s hard to say if that was just because I was in my third trimester,” Gilley said.

At the end of February, Henry was born at full term.

“He is a very healthy baby,” said his mom.

Increased risk of COVID-19 severity

Emerging data out of Canada shows pregnant women who contract COVID-19 have an increased risk of being hospitalized, admitted to intensive care units and preterm births.

This, something that reproductive infectious diseases specialist Dr. Chelsea Elwood has seen first-hand working at BC Women’s Hospital.

“When we admit them they are facing the same respiratory complications, including shortness of breath and a need for oxygen, as people in their 50s.”

The specialist recommends all Health Canada-approved COVID-19 vaccines for pregnant and breastfeeding women.

“There is no known risk of miscarriage or birth defects,” she said.

“I know what’s gotten out on social media is that the vaccine could cause infertility but that is not based on good science.”

If anything, pregnant women could pass COVID-fighting antibodies to the baby in utero or through breastmilk, she said.

RELATED: U.S. recommends pregnant women get COVID vaccine after study shows it’s safe



sarah.grochowski@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Coronavirusvaccines

Just Posted

Kierra Smith (Contributed)
Kelowna swimmer headed to Toronto hoping to qualify for Olympics

If she qualifies, it will be Kierra Smith’s second time swimming at the Olympics

Kelowna flags were flown at half-mast after the discovery of a residential school burial site in Kamloops. (File photo)
Central Okanagan school board chair reflects on recent tragedies

Moyra Baxter offers condolenses to residential school victims, slain Muslim family

(Dave Ogilvie/Contributed)
UPDATE: West Kelowna fire crews rescue injured mountain biker

The injury took place at the top of Smith Creek Road

(Dave Ogilvie/Contributed
SUV hurdles down embankment in West Kelowna

The road was down to one lane while a tow truck pulled it up from the hill

The RCMP presence in Central Okanagan public schools is being reviewed by the board of education. (File photo)
RCMP presence welcomed in Central Okanagan public schools

Staff survey feedback overwhelmingly positive from students, staff and parents

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Longtime SOWINS volunteer Diane Fru (far left) walks with members of her family as they Walk To End Abuse Sunday, June 13, 2021. South Okanagan Women In Needs Society (SOWINS) raised a record amount this year. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Walk to End Abuse in South Okanagan breaks fundraising record

More than $53,000 raised so far while the pandemic has increased need for SOWINS’ services

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

Most Read