Pregnancy & COVID-19

Last updated: March 27

Current information does not indicate that pregnancy alone causes a person to be at increased risk for serious complications if they are infected with COVID-19. However, those who are pregnant are known to be at greater risk of severe complications from other respiratory infections, such as influenza. That is why people who are pregnant are considered an at-risk population for COVID-19. Your physician can review your medical record to give you a greater understanding of your personal risk.

Here are answers to some common questions related to pregnancy and COVID-19. Please note that these answers are subject to change as we receive more information about COVID-19. If you have additional questions not answered here, call your physician or the Northwestern Medicine COVID-19 hotline at 312.47.COVID (312.472.6843).

Frequently Asked Questions

Keep at least a 2-week supply of your medications and contact your physician if you need refills. To refill your prescription, you can limit exposure to the virus by using a mail-order service or drive-thru pharmacy, or have a caregiver pick up your medication.

Physicians recommend that people who are pregnant adhere to the recommendations released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prioritizing physical distancing and hand hygiene. You should also exercise, eat well, reduce stress and get plenty of sleep.

If you have COVID-19 symptoms such as a fever, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath, call your physician for guidance.

If you have been exposed to someone who received a COVID-19 diagnosis, you should self-isolate for 14 days and monitor for symptoms of the virus. If you begin to experience symptoms, call your physician.

Northwestern Medicine is taking great precautions to help ensure the safety of all patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please talk to your physician about visitor limitations that are in place to protect you, your baby, and all patients, visitors, physicians and staff.

Talk to your physician and your family to decide whether breastfeeding is right for you while you are in the infectious phase of the virus. Also consult the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s resource, Interim Guidance on Breastfeeding for a Mother Confirmed or Under Investigation for COVID-19.

Currently, the greatest concern is whether an infected parent can transmit the virus through respiratory droplets while breastfeeding their baby. If you have confirmed COVID-19 or its symptoms, practice diligent hand hygiene and, if possible, wear a face mask while breastfeeding. If you use a breast pump, wash your hands before you touch the pump or bottle parts, and carefully clean the pump after its use. You may also want to consider having someone who doesn’t have symptoms feed the expressed breast milk to your baby.

COVID-19 is a rapidly changing, global health issue. Access the latest information from the following organizations: