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Immunization and pregnancy

Learn how vaccines are an important part of a healthy pregnancy for you and your baby.

Healthy pregnancy

When you are pregnant, you may have a higher risk of infection and health problems from certain diseases. These infections can also affect your baby and cause birth defects, miscarriage, or result in your baby being born too soon.

Immunization (getting a vaccine) is safe and is an important part of staying healthy. Make sure that you’ve had all the vaccines recommended for you. Talk to your healthcare provider and your public health or community health centre about the vaccines you need for your own health, your partner’s health, and the health of your baby.

Vaccines before pregnancy

It is important to be up to date with all your routine immunizations.

Rubella, measles, mumps, and varicella (chickenpox) can harm a growing fetus. They can cause birth defects, fetal death, or result in your baby being born too soon. Varicella can also be dangerous for you when you’re pregnant.

Before getting pregnant, check with your healthcare provider to see if you are protected against these diseases. A blood test can check if you have protection for rubella and varicella. If you aren’t protected, it is best to get these vaccines before you get pregnant, as these vaccines are not given during pregnancy.

You should wait 1 month after getting these vaccines before you start trying to get pregnant. Talk with your doctor if you get pregnant and it has been less than 1 month since you had these vaccines.

Vaccines during pregnancy

During pregnancy, getting the influenza, COVID-19, and Tdap vaccines is considered safe for you and your baby.

Vaccines for family and friends

People who will have close contact with your baby should also get the influenza, Tdap, and COVID-19 vaccines if they haven’t had them.

It’s best for people to get these vaccines at least 2 weeks before having contact with your baby.

Current as of: July 1, 2024
Author: Provincial Immunization Program, Alberta Health Services
Our work takes place on historical and contemporary Indigenous lands, including the territories of Treaty 6, Treaty 7 & Treaty 8 and the homeland of the Métis Nation of Alberta and 8 Métis Settlements. We also acknowledge the many Indigenous communities that have been forged in urban centres across Alberta.