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Covid-19 infections: Frequent hospital visits making pregnant women vulnerable: Experts

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Srinagar: Doctors here in Kashmir Valley say that frequent hospital visits is the main reason for pregnant ladies contracting Covid-19 infection. Pregnant ladies over all don’t follow the health advisories and repeatedly visit health centres and hospital prior to delivery, they say.
Dr Nisar-ul-Hasan, who is flu expert said that the shocking and surprising part is that majority of the pregnant ladies don’t transmit the infection to new born babies which implies that this virus behaves in mild manner and is not threatening like other flu related virus.
“Testing for pregnant ladies is mandatory. When you go for mass testing, Coronaviurs cases are bound to emerge. There might be a large number of asymptomatic patients present in the society and if you test them, more cases will surface. Since, it is mandatory for pregnant ladies to get tested before delivery, that is why we see more positive cases among pregnant ladies,” they said.
Dr Suhail Nayak, who also heads a faction of DAK said that tentatively out of 6,000 tests conducted on pregnant women so far, over 150 ladies have tested positive and it is not a big number.
Both Dr Nisar-ul-Hasan and Dr Suhail Nayak said that awareness is very important with regard to Covid-19 infection.
“There are health advisories that a pregnant woman should restrict her visit to PHC or hospital to four times in her 9 months of pregnancy and this advisory needs to be followed religiously. What happens, especially in rural areas that pregnant women make frequent visits to hospitals and health centres before the delivery and come into the contact of a large number of people, mostly health professionals? This way they become vulnerable,” they said and added that it shows that infection is already present in the hospitals and it is a matter of serious concern.
“The infected pregnant ladies have no travel history and still they are test Covid-19 positive. It needs to be investigated but one thing is clear that these women catch infection after coming into contact with a variety of people during their visits to hospitals and health centres,” Dr Nisar-ul-Hasan said.
Dr Suhail Nayak said that the Covid-19 tests being conducted in Valley are accurate and people should not question the conviction and rectitude of health professionals.
“The Covid-19 infection can be limited in pregnant women if they stop frequent visits to hospitals,” he said.
“Pregnant women do not appear more likely to contract the infection than the general population. However, pregnancy itself alters the body’s immune system and response to viral infections in general, which can occasionally be related to more severe symptoms and this will be the same for Covid-19,” said Dr Nisar-ul-Hasan adding that reported cases of Coronavirus pneumonia in pregnancy are milder and with good recovery.
Dr Suhail Nayak said that the Coronavirus epidemic increases the risk of prenatal anxiety and depression.
“It is critically important that support for women and families is strengthened as far as possible,” he added. (KNT)

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