BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — UAB doctors are echoing the CDC’s recommendations when it comes to pregnant women being at a high risk of server illness from COVID-19 compared to non-pregnant people.

During the month of August, UAB has cared for 39 pregnant women battling COVID and of those 10 are in the ICU and seven are currently on ventilators.

“Unfortunately, some of these women require preterm delivery in order to maximize survival for both the mother and the baby,” said Audra Williams, M.D., assistant professor in UAB’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Dr. Williams says none of the pregnant women in the ICU are fully vaccinated. Some of the women-only received one dose of the vaccine.

“Any pregnant patient that is considered the vaccine I strongly encourage you to talk to your health care provider. We don’t want to see you here in the ICU and having to have your baby delivered early when it’s something that could have been prevented,” said Dr. Williams.

“I got my first Pfizer vaccine on December the 18 on I was 21 weeks pregnant, and I was really excited for the opportunity to keep myself and my baby safe,” said Jessica Grayson, M.D., assistant professor in the UAB Department of Otolaryngology.

Dr. Grayson says she had no complications after receiving both doses of the vaccine and had a successful delivery in April.

“My child is growing normally he’s 4-months-old he’s hit every milestone he’s happier than my other kid at baseline but I don’t think that’s vaccine-related it just happens to be his personality,” said Dr. Grayson.

In an effort to help motivate women to roll up their sleeves to get the vaccine UAB doctors say they are doing their best to fight misinformation.

“There is zero evidence that the vaccine is linked to infertility that is a rumor that is out there I hear it in the work I do in Africa I hear it from the patients I take care of here in Birmingham, so we have to be clear there is no association,” said Jodie Dionne, M.D., associate director of UAB’s Global Health in the Center for Women’s Reproductive Health and associate professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases.

UAB doctors also encouraging spouses to get vaccinated as another layer of protection for an expecting mother and her unborn child.