Real-world data shows RSV vaccine reduces childhood hospitalizations by 90%

FRIDAY, March 8, 2024 (HealthDay News) — Real-world data shows that a vaccine that protects babies from RSV is about 90 percent effective at keeping them out of the hospital.

These numbers are higher than expected from Befortus (nirsevimab), which reduced the need for medical care and hospitalization for RSV infection by 79 percent in clinical trials, researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report. The need to have it was stopped by 81 percent.

According to the CDC, Beaufort is recommended for all children under 8 months of age during their first respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) season.

According to the CDC, RSV is the leading cause of hospitalization in young children, admitting 50,000 to 80,000 children under the age of 5 to U.S. hospitals each year.

Beaufort is a monoclonal antibody that specifically stimulates the child’s immune system to fight RSV infection. It was approved by the FDA last summer, so this was the first cold and flu season where the drug had a chance to prove itself.

RSV vaccines are also available, but they are only recommended for older people and pregnant women.

In the new study, CDC scientists followed 699 infants over the past five months, using early data from the agency’s New Vaccine Monitoring Network.

The results showed that Befortus was 90% effective in preventing RSV-related hospitalization in infants.

According to the CDC, infants with high-risk medical conditions were more likely to receive the vaccine than healthy infants, 46 percent versus 6 percent.

“RSV prevention products remain our most important tool in protecting children from RSV,” the agency said in a news release.

The CDC said this was a shorter monitoring period than usual, and that Beaufort’s effectiveness may be lower during the full RSV season, which runs from October to March. This is because protection against monoclonal antibodies usually wanes over time.

According to the CDC, nirsevimab is specifically for babies whose mothers did not receive the RSV vaccine during pregnancy. Vaccination of the mother against RSV transfers protective antibodies to the baby.

The study is published in the March 7 issue of the CDC journal Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

more information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has more information about RSV prevention for infants and young children.

Source: US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), news release, March 7, 2024

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