4 News Now Q&A: If I’m pregnant and positive for COVID-19, will I pass it on to my newborn?

Q: If I’m pregnant and positive for COVID-19, will I pass it on to my newborn?

A: A new study suggests pregnant women are unlikely to pass COVID-19 to their newborns.

Researchers from Harvard Medical School studied 127 pregnant women admitted to three Boston hospitals this year. 64 of them tested positive for COVID-19, but none of their babies did.

Researchers detected the virus in respiratory fluids, but not in the bloodstream or placenta.

Doctors say more research is needed on the topic, but for now, it’s encouraging news for the four million babies born in the U.S. every year.

“There’s no shortage of fear in parenting at baseline,” ABC News Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Jennifer Ashton said. “It’s not always possible to micromanage life or these kind of decisions. Right now, it appears the risk to the newborn is very, very low. Moms generally bear more of the risk of COVID infection and still, we’re going to be looking closely for some good data out of clinical trials of pregnant women who then get vaccinated against COVID-19. So there will be a lot we’ll be learning in 2021.”

While the research is mostly reassuring, the study also found that protective antibodies did not get passed down to the infants, leaving them at risk for possible infection.

As new research is conducted and more conclusions are drawn, we want to keep you up to date with the latest information. Send us your questions here and we’ll go to the experts for you.