Pregnant women urged to beware flu

Embargoed to 1700 Monday May 12''File photo dated 01/04/14 of a pregnant woman as being pregnant significantly increases a woman driver's chances of having a serious car crash, research has shown. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday May 12, 2014. During the second month of pregnancy, the risk of being involved in a road accident requiring hospital treatment rose by 42%, a Canadian study of more than 500,000 pregnant women found. In the three years before getting pregnant, the women between them had an average 177 crashes per month. See PA story HEALTH Pregnant. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
Embargoed to 1700 Monday May 12''File photo dated 01/04/14 of a pregnant woman as being pregnant significantly increases a woman driver's chances of having a serious car crash, research has shown. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday May 12, 2014. During the second month of pregnancy, the risk of being involved in a road accident requiring hospital treatment rose by 42%, a Canadian study of more than 500,000 pregnant women found. In the three years before getting pregnant, the women between them had an average 177 crashes per month. See PA story HEALTH Pregnant. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Pregnant women in the Borders are being urged to protect themselves against flu, after recent figures showed half are still to be vaccinated.

Statistics highlight that flu was the cause of death among one in 11 women who died during, or shortly after, pregnancy. Pregnant women who contract flu are also five times more likely to have a stillborn baby, or for the baby to die in the first week following birth.

The vaccine offered is a good match for the circulating strains being detected and is expected to provide good levels of protection. Women can have the flu vaccination at any stage of pregnancy and evidence shows the vaccine can help to protect the baby for up to three months after birth.

Director of the Royal College of Midwives Scotland, Gillian Smith said: “It has now become critical we stress to pregnant women that flu is a really serious illness.”