Characteristics and outcomes of pregnant women hospitalised with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection in the UK: a national cohort study using the UK Obstetric Surveillance System (UKOSS)

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To describe a national cohort of pregnant women hospitalised with SARS-CoV-2 infection in the UK, identify factors associated with infection and describe outcomes, including transmission of infection, for mother and infant.


Prospective national population-based cohort study using the UK Obstetric Surveillance System (UKOSS).


All 194 obstetric units in the UK


427 pregnant women admitted to hospital with confirmed Sars-CoV-2 infection between 01/03/2020 and 14/04/2020. 694 comparison women who gave birth between 01/11/2017 and 31/10/2018.

Main outcome measures

Incidence of maternal hospitalisation, infant infection. Rates of maternal death, level 3 critical care unit admission, preterm birth, stillbirth, early neonatal death, perinatal death; odds ratios for infected versus comparison women.


Estimated incidence of hospitalisation with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 in pregnancy 4.9 per 1000 maternities (95%CI 4.5-5.4). The median gestation at symptom onset was 34 weeks (IQR 29-38). Black or other minority ethnicity (aOR 4.49, 95%CI 3.37-6.00), older maternal age (aOR 1.35, 95%CI 1.01-1.81 comparing women aged 35+ with those aged 30-34), overweight and obesity (aORs 1.91, 95%CI 1.37-2.68 and 2.20, 95%CI 1.56-3.10 respectively compared to women with a BMI<25kg/m2) and pre-existing comorbidities (aOR 1.52, 95%CI 1.12 2.06) were associated with admission with SARS-CoV-2 during pregnancy. 247 women (58%) gave birth or had a pregnancy loss; 180 (73%) gave birth at term. 40 (9%) hospitalised women required respiratory support. Twelve infants (5%) tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA, six of these infants within the first 12 hours after birth.


The majority of pregnant women hospitalised with SARS-CoV-2 were in the late second or third trimester, supporting guidance for continued social distancing measures in later pregnancy. Most had good outcomes and transmission of SARS-CoV-2 to infants was uncommon.

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