Map of Simcoe Muskoka

Pregnancy and Before

Infections in Pregnancy

Types of Infection

A growing fetus is protected in the womb from many bacteria and viruses during pregnancy. However, some pathogens can still spread to the infant during pregnancy or during birth.

Group B Streptococcus is a common type of bacteria which can be readily treated with antibiotics and which does not typically cause serious illness in healthy adults. However, if passed on to the newborn during delivery or if introduced in the uterus as a result of ruptured membranes, Group B Streptococcus can cause severe infections, and sometimes death. Other infections that can impact the health of pregnant women or their babies can include urinary tract infections, sexually transmitted infections and vaccine preventable diseases such as flu, chickenpox and rubella.

For more information on sexually transmitted infections and bloodborne viruses, please visit the Sexual Health section of the health unit’s website or our local disease statistics.

For more information about vaccine preventable diseases or immunizations, please visit the Immunization section of the health unit’s website.


According to data from the Better Outcomes Registry & Network (BORN), in 2016, approximately 1 in 5 (20.2% (19.1%, 21.3%)) new mothers in Simcoe Muskoka reported an infection during their pregnancy. Older women reported significantly fewer infections during pregnancy than younger mothers.


Types of Infection

In 2016, the most commonly reported infection among Simcoe Muskoka new mothers was Group B Streptococcus, making up nearly a third (31.0% (28.3%, 33.8%)) of the reported infections. Approximately one quarter of these infections were urinary tract infections (UTIs; 26.0% (23.5%, 28.7%)), with UTI reports significantly more common among young pregnant women (15-24 years). Fewer than one in ten reported infections were sexually transmitted infections (9.4% (7.8%, 11.2%)). Approximately one in forty (2.4% (1.6%, 3.4%)) of the reported infections were seasonal influenza and 1.1% (0.6%, 1.9%) of infections were blood borne, including hepatitis and HIV.