New RSV vaccine for Pregnant Women

11.07.2024 Category: General Health Author: Chiara Samarelli

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is a common and highly contagious virus that primarily affects the respiratory tract, causing significant illness, particularly in infants.

As it is seasonal, it usually peaks during the winter months and spreads through droplets from coughs and sneezes, or via contact with contaminated surfaces. RSV is a virus, so antibiotics are not an effective treatment.

Each year, RSV poses a substantial health risk to infants and older adults worldwide.

In the UK, RSV accounts for approximately 33,500 hospitalisations annually in children aged 5 and under, resulting in 20 to 30 deaths per year. 75-80% of hospitalisations due to RSV happened during the first 6 months of life.

Is there a suitable RSV vaccine for pregnant woman?

Abrysvo is a recombinant vaccine for the prevention of severe lower respiratory tract disease caused by RSV in infants up to six months old. It is the only maternal RSV immunisation given to the pregnant woman between 32 – 36 weeks of pregnancy to help protect newborns. It can also be used for older adults over the age of 60 years, in preventing RSV that can lead to breathing difficulties.

Maternal vaccination involves administering vaccines to pregnant women to protect their newborns through the transfer of antibodies. This approach has been effectively used for diseases like whooping cough. Vaccinating pregnant women against RSV provides passive immunity to their babies, safeguarding them against RSV until they can receive their own vaccines. The RSV vaccine must be given at least 2 weeks apart from the whooping cough vaccine.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has assessed the impact of RSV and recommended implementing immunisation programs to protect vulnerable groups, including infants and older adults. Although the specific details and timeline are still being finalised, the program aims to reduce the incidence of RSV-related illnesses among infants, ultimately reducing RSV-related morbidity.

At Fleet Street Clinic, we can offer private RSV vaccination to protect you and your baby, ahead of the NHS roll out.

Abrysvo is an inactivated vaccine and only requires a single dose for protection.



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