New Vaccine Recommended to Protect Infants from Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
Advisors to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have recently recommended a new vaccine called Abryvso, developed by Pfizer, to protect infants from respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). This vaccine is specifically given to pregnant women during their third trimester to safeguard newborns from lower respiratory tract disease caused by RSV in their first six months of life.
RSV is the leading cause of hospitalization for infants in the United States, resulting in medical visits, hospitalizations, and unfortunately, deaths in children under the age of 5. With this alarming statistic, the CDC director, Dr. Mandy Cohen, swiftly backed the panel’s recommendations and urged parents to consult their doctors regarding protecting their infants against RSV illness.
The vaccine, which will be available during the fall surge in RSV cases, is expected to be recommended for pregnant women in their third trimester. However, health officials may offer alternative recommendations in areas with different RSV seasons, considering the variation in the virus’s prevalence.
Furthermore, in addition to the Pfizer vaccine, another preventive measure for RSV in babies is set to enter the market. Sanofi and AstraZeneca jointly developed nirsevimab, a monoclonal antibody designed for infants under eight months old. The CDC advises parents to choose one of these two options as they both offer reliable protection against RSV. Both interventions have demonstrated safety and efficacy in reducing RSV-related medical visits and severe RSV cases in infants.
Despite the availability and effectiveness of these vaccines, the CDC projects that only 50% of eligible individuals will choose to be vaccinated. It is important to note that insurance coverage may not be available for everyone during this RSV season, potentially limiting accessibility to the vaccine.
In conclusion, the introduction of the Abryvso vaccine from Pfizer provides hope in the fight against RSV, the leading cause of infant hospitalizations in the U.S. With multiple options available, parents are encouraged to discuss these preventive measures with their healthcare providers and make informed decisions to protect their little ones from this harmful respiratory virus.