More pregnant women receiving flu vaccine

In a Centers for Disease Control study it was found that over double the amount of pregnant women received the flu vaccine in the 2009-2010 flu season than in the previous two years in 10 states surveyed.

The report, published Thursday in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, detailed that 50.7 percent of pregnant women received the seasonal flu vaccine and 46.6 got the H1N1 flu vaccine during the 2009-2010 season. Atypically, there were two flu shots last year since H1N1 came about as the dominant flu strain after the regular flu vaccine had already been put into production, CNN’s The Chart reports.

Vaccination rates during the 2007-2008 flu season covered only 24.2 percent of pregnant women, which was still much higher than the 2008-2009 season rate of 11.3 percent, CNN's The Chart reports.

The vaccination may help women to prevent themselves from getting the flu and further weakening their immune systems to more serious complications from the flu. Vaccination also protects the unborn child, which receives protective antibodies from the mom. Babies are not able to receive a flu shot until they have reached six months of age.

Women were more likely to get a flu shot if it was recommended for them by a doctor. The report suggests “continued efforts to educate the public and healthcare providers will be needed to increase influenza vaccination among pregnant women” during the current flu season, CNN’s The Chart reports.

According to the report, many women didn’t get the H1N1 vaccine because they weren’t sure if it was safe for them or their baby.