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The speed of the UK’s COVID-19 vaccination programme has been breathtaking, with more than 41 million doses administered by mid-April. However, almost inevitably with such a huge and rapidly evolving programme, some aspects have not been handled so well. For years, there have been pleas for pregnant women to be involved in and not excluded from clinical trials.1 So it is disappointing that pregnant and breastfeeding women were excluded from all COVID-19 vaccine research last year, although such trials are due to start soon. The adverse consequences of this exclusion have been compounded by initial guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) in which it identified priority groups for vaccination.2 Although pregnant and breastfeeding women could fall in six of the nine groups, JCVI recommended that women should be advised ‘not to come forward for vaccination if they may be pregnant or are planning a pregnancy …
Competing interests None declared. Refer to the online supplementary files to view the ICMJE form(s).
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.