Study shows benefits of flu vaccine for pregnant women

A study by the Yale School of Medicine recently found that vaccinating pregnant women against influenza is over 90 percent effective in preventing newborns from being hospitalized by the illness in the first six months of life.

Isaac Benowitz, Marietta Vazquez and their colleagues, the authors of the study, looked at infants hospitalized with influenza at the Yale –New Haven Hospital and a similar number of infants without influenza. They then compared the two groups to see which mothers had received the vaccine during pregnancy, according to SyFy.

"When we compared vaccination rates during pregnancy in the study, we found that in the group of infants who didn't have influenza, far more mothers received the influenza vaccine," Vazquez said, according to "In the group of infants studied, giving the vaccine to a woman during pregnancy was 91.5 percent effective in preventing hospitalization due to influenza."

The study, published in the journal Clinical and Infectious Diseases, can provide a strategy to protect infants under the age of six months, Vazquez said, according to SyFy. There is no vaccine currently available that can be given to infants that young. Vaccination during pregnancy is also cost effective, Vazquez said, since one dose protects two people.