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KUCHING, Feb 18: Pregnant women have been urged to get vaccinated after a study found that 79 per cent of maternal deaths due to Covid-19 that have occurred in Malaysia were unvaccinated and 83 per cent of cases had some form of comorbidity.
Apart from that, being overweight and obesity was also among the health risk factors frequently reported.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, in the latest national Covid-19 update statement, said that the highest number of maternal deaths due to Covid-19 complication occurred in 2021 with 31 deaths in july, 77 cases in August and 44 cases in September.
“Since the pandemic started in 2020, Malaysia recorded a total of 191 maternal deaths with all cases occurring in 2021.
“There were no cases reported so far this year up until Feb 15,” he added.
From March 2020 until January 2022, Dr Noor Hisham disclosed that a total of 18,277 pregnant women in Malaysia have been infected with Covid-19, which accounted for 0.64 per cent of the overall infections reported in the same period.
One of the factors that contributed to the decreasing maternal deaths starting from October last year, he emphasised, was the result of the high vaccination rate covering up to 94.7 per cent of adults 18-years-old and above.
“Based on data up until October 2021, 94 per cent of pregnant women have received at least one dose of vaccine and out of that, 91 per cent have completed two doses of the vaccine,” he said.
In view that pregnant women are at higher risk of getting severe Covid-19 complications, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has urged this group to take additional precautions.
“Stay at home and go out for important matters only. Practice new normal by complying with the standard operating procedure (SOP).
“Family members are reminded to not be the cause of infection in pregnant women by adhering to SOP while outside of home. If family members are under home quarantine, make sure they comply with all the procedures,” Dr Noor Hisham advised.
Pregnant women who tested positive for Covid-19 are also required to report themselves to the Covid-19 Assessment Centre (CAC) to be assessed by doctors.
“MOH also urged all women and pregnant women to get vaccinated including booster dose as the vaccine is proven to reduce the risks of complications when infected by Covid-19.
“Pregnant women who have yet to receive their booster dose for Covid-19 are urged to contact the nearest health clinic or private clinic of choice to get their appointments,” he added. — DayakDaily