UT Health doctors share findings regarding COVID-19, pregnancy in webinar

UT Health San Antonio doctors share findings in COVID-19 webinar

SAN ANTONIO – For the past four Fridays, Dr. Patrick Ramsey, a maternal fetal medicine specialist at UT Health San Antonio, has taken center stage in a webinar that shares ever-changing information on how COVID-19 affects pregnancy.

“I’m using our Fellows to help kind of do a journal watch every week to search for the latest literature coming out. Every morning, I’m pulling the latest statistics to see what’s going on in the world and locally on COVID-19,” said Ramsey, who then relays the information every Friday to health professionals online.

Ramsey said they have had several cases of coronavirus locally in the OB/GYN community at University Hospital, but not a lot of information on how the virus affects the fetus. That’s why daily scouring, then weekly sharing of new details has become part of his routine.

“Participants can ask us questions about, ‘What do you think about this approach?' Or why we’re doing this and what are other people doing. And we get this really robust discussion group going on about what might be working in one place that may not work in another,” Ramsey said. The result is a more informed medical community and hopefully better containment and more uniform care for everyone.

As has been the case for all demographics, the recommendations are constantly changing regarding pregnancy and COVID-19. The latest development is often eclipsed within days by another. One example is the major discovery at Columbia University, where researchers were screening all pregnant women who came into the hospital in New York for scheduled delivery or C-section. The researchrs found a shocking statistic.

“They noted that a significant proportion of those women didn’t have symptoms, but they actually tested positive. It was like 87% of the patients that were eventually tested positive,” Ramsey said.

It’s believed that pregnant women have an altered immune system and they and their babies are somehow protected from the coronavirus. But again, there’s no hard and fast rules as to why or just how protected the mothers and babies might be.

The development will not doubt make the next UT Health Maternal Health Webinar very interesting. If you are a healthcare professional and would like to take part in the Friday webinar, contact rebecca.terrazas@uhs-sa.com.

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March.


About the Author:

Ursula Pari has been a staple of television news in Texas at KSAT 12 News since 1996 and a veteran of broadcast journalism for more than 30 years.