HealthDay News — The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) is endorsing the CDC’s updated guidelines for administering tetanus toxoid, reduced diphtheria toxoid, and acellular pertussis vaccine (Tdap) during each pregnancy. 

The ACOG Committee on Obstetric Practice announced it has updated it’s guidelines for Tdap immunization during pregnancy to reflect those of the CDC’s Advisory Commitee on Immunization Practice (ACIP). The guidelines are based on the imperative to minimize the burden of pertussis disease in vulnerable newborns, the safety of Tdap in adults and data relating to the waning of immunity after immunization.

The guidelines state a dose of Tdap be administered during each pregnancy, regardless of the patient’s previous history of receiving Tdap. Although Tdap may be administered at any time during pregnancy, the optimal timing to give the shot is between 27 and 36 weeks of gestation in order to maximize the maternal antibody response and passive antibody transfer to the newborn.

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Vaccinating pregnant women with an inactivated virus or bacterial vaccines or toxoids produces no adverse fetal effects, and a growing body of robust evidence demonstrates its safety. For previously unvaccinated women who did not receive Tdap during pregnancy, Tdap should be administered to the mother immediately postpartum in order to reduce the risk of transmission to the newborn. As previously recommended, other family members and prospective direct caregivers should also receive Tdap.

“Given the rapid evolution of data surrounding this topic, immunization guidelines are likely to change over time and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists will continue to issue updates accordingly,” the researchers wrote.


  1. Committee%20Opinion%20No.%20566:%20Update%20on%20Immunization%20and%20Pregnancy:%20Tetanus,%20Diphtheria,%20and%20Pertussis%20Vaccination The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. “Committee Opinion No. 566: Update on Immunization and Pregnancy: Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis Vaccination.” Obstetrics & Gynecology. 2013; 121(6):1411-1414.