About the COVID Mothers Study
The COVID Mothers Study is a worldwide survey of mothers which aims to answer the following questions about an infected mother's maternity experiences: Was she separated from her infant? Was she allowed to have skin-to-skin contact in the first hour after birth, and was she allowed to directly breastfeed her infant? We also ask if she had her breasts washed. We then ask about the outcomes: Did she have difficulty breastfeeding? Did her infant get COVID? If so, how severe was the infant's disease?
The survey has been reviewed by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) of Harvard University. Mothers can participate if either they or their infant had COVID-19 prior to the infant's first birthday. In order to gain full knowledge of how a mother's peripartum experience affected her, mothers cannot fill out the survey until their infants are at least 1 month old. By including infants who experienced COVID at ages beyond the perinatal period, we will be able to correlate disease incidence and severity with breastfeeding history if we get a large enough sample size of older infants. We also ask mothers about the psychological impact of infant separation on them, in order to get a sense of the magnitude of maternal harm, if any, from this routine practice. Read about the Study Team.
The survey is built on the Qualtrics platform licensed to Harvard Medical School, and takes respondents anywhere from 3 to 8 minutes to complete. Not all respondents will see every question. The survey is anonymous, and no identifying information is collected from respondents, including their IP addresses or demographic information. We only ask respondents their country of residence. The survey is now available in English, Spanish, French, Brazilian Portuguese, Italian, German, Chinese, and Japanese.The survey was launched on May 4, 2020. Countries in the European Union and the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein, and Iceland are covered by the General Data Protection Regulation, which required a separate approval process. We were able to gain approval at the end of June for residents of these countries to be able to participate in the survey. Participants of these countries must give additional consent in order to participate.
(Updated June 30, 2020)