Why Maternal Vaccines Are Important

Maternal Tdap vaccination helps protect infants. Newborn babies are at the greatest risk for developing pertussis and its life-threatening complications. Flu vaccination during pregnancy is safe and helps protect babies from flu for several months after birth. This is important because babies younger than 6 months of age are too young to get a flu vaccine. As the most valued and trusted source of health information for pregnant women, it’s important that ob-gyns, midwives, and other healthcare professionals recommend maternal vaccines to their patients.

Vaccines Routinely Recommended for Pregnant Women

It is safe to give the flu vaccine and Tdap vaccine to pregnant patients during the same appointment.

Tdap (Pertussis) Vaccine

female doctor talking with a pregnant patient

Tdap Vaccine

  • Tdap vaccine is recommended during every pregnancy, between 27 and 36 weeks gestation (preferably earlier in this period).
  • When given during pregnancy, Tdap vaccine boosts antibodies in the mother, which are transferred to her developing baby. Early third trimester administration optimizes neonatal antibody levels.

Flu Vaccine

  • Flu vaccine is recommended for pregnant women and safe to administer during any trimester.
  • Flu vaccine is the best way to protect pregnant women and their babies from the flu and prevent possible flu-associated pregnancy complications.
Page last reviewed: August 15, 2017