Agonizing Lag in Coronavirus Research Puts Pregnant Women and Babies at Risk

July 7, 2020

(ProPublica) – In late June, after three months of near silence on the topic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finally weighed in on a question of critical importance to millions of American women and families: How dangerous is the coronavirus for pregnant women and new mothers? The CDC had been asserting that pregnant women don’t seem to be at higher risk for severe complications from the virus. As recently as late May, a spokesperson told ProPublica, “Current evidence shows pregnant women have the same risk of severe illness from COVID-19 as adults who are not pregnant.” hen, the agency abruptly changed its tone. In its first examination of U.S. data on COVID-19 in pregnancy, the CDC found that expectant mothers with the virus had a 50% higher chance of being admitted to intensive care and a 70% higher chance of being intubated than nonpregnant women in their childbearing years.