Results of the Survey on Vaccination during Pregnancy
Pertussis and Influenza Vaccination for Pregnant Women in Canada
In March 2018, the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommended vaccination of all pregnant women against pertussis to protect their unborn children until they can be vaccinated themselves. Most provinces and territories began offering this vaccine free of charge to pregnant women in the past two years.
Since 2011, the NACI has recommended that pregnant women should be vaccinated against influenza, and most provinces and territories offer the vaccine free of charge.
The Survey on Vaccination during Pregnancy, first conducted in 2019, was a component of the Childhood National Immunization Coverage Survey (CNICS). The biological mothers of 5091 children born between September 2018 and March 2019 were asked about vaccinations received during their pregnancy.
In 2019, provinces and territories began flu vaccination on different dates, with the latest having started on November 1st. For this reason, only 2,429 mothers who gave birth between December and March (i.e. who had at least one month to get vaccinated before the end of their pregnancy) were included in the analyses on influenza vaccination.
The number of participants from Nunavut was insufficient to allow reliable estimates. However, these participants are included in the national coverage estimates.
Key findings: pertussis
Of those mothers who knew if they had been vaccinated against pertussis during their pregnancy, 43% had been vaccinated. There were significant differences between provinces and territories. In addition, it should be noted that 10% of the mothers did not know if they had been vaccinated.
|Province or Territory||Percentage of mothers vaccinated against pertussis during pregnancy (%)Table 1 Footnote *|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||16|
|Prince Edward Island||76|
|Nunavut||Table 1 Footnote **|
One of the reasons for the large differences between provinces is that some provinces have not begun offering the vaccine and promoting it to health care professionals and pregnant women at the same time.
The main reasons for not having been vaccinated against pertussis were:
- I did not know that this vaccine was recommended during pregnancy (60%)
- I did not want to be vaccinated against pertussis during my pregnancy (16%)
- This vaccine was not offered by my health care provider (11%)
Key findings: influenza
Of those mothers who knew if they had been vaccinated against influenza during pregnancy, 45% had been vaccinated. Again, there were significant differences between provinces and territories. In addition, 3% of mothers did not know if they had been vaccinated during their pregnancy.
|Province or Territory||Percentage of mothers vaccinated against influenza during pregnancy (%)Table 2 Footnote *|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||43|
|Prince Edward Island||74|
|Nunavut||Table 2 Footnote **|
The differences between the provinces and territories may be explained by the fact that they have different recommendations regarding influenza vaccination during pregnancy.
The main reasons for not having been vaccinated against influenza were:
- I did not want to be vaccinated against influenza during my pregnancy (46%)
- I did not know that this vaccine was recommended during pregnancy (23%)
To be continued
Analysis of the data from the Survey on Vaccination During Pregnancy has just begun. Results of further analyses will be posted on canada.ca as they become available.
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