MP Ian Liddell-Grainger has joined other parliamentarians in urging expectant mothers to come forward for vaccination against Covid-19.
He says it is essential for them to do so as early in pregnancy as possible – because contracting Covid in the later stages could be highly dangerous.
And he has condemned a wave of anti-vaccine trolling aimed at Royal College of Midwives chief executive Gill Walton after she issued a plea last week for pregnant mothers to step up for the jab.
Mr Liddell-Grainger, MP for Bridgwater and West Somerset, said it was shameful that doubts about the safety of the vaccine were being sown among a section of the population most in need of protection.
He said: “There is evidence to demonstrate that expectant mothers face no risk in getting vaccinated.
“Equally there is general agreement in the medical profession that contracting Covid in the later stages of pregnancy could be disastrous.
“We absolutely have to build on the success we have already achieved with vaccination because it is the only thing that offers us the ability to fight back against the virus – and avoid more lockdowns.
A clinical trial has now been launched to help determine the best gap between doses for pregnant women as well as exploring in greater detail potential side-effects and the impact on babies – something the researchers hope will offer reassurance.
But, said Mr Liddell-Grainger: “The fundamental message is that protection is better than infection and I can only urge expectant mothers to ignore the trolling, ignore the deluded anti-vaxers and listen to the advice of medical professionals.”