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Second Vaccine to Prevent RSV in Older Adults Approved by the FDA

Published June 2, 2023

Masked older Hispanic male getting a vaccine administered by a physician in a white lab coat.

Lindsay Clarke, Senior Vice President of Health Education & Advocacy released the following statement on behalf of the Alliance for Aging Research in response to the recent approval of ABRYSVO™:

Yesterday the Food and Drug Administration approved the second vaccine to help protect against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) in older adults. This is great news because it means that healthcare professionals and patients will have a choice when protecting themselves against RSV—a serious infectious disease that causes an estimated 177,000 hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths in adults ages 65 and each year. Complications can be especially serious in older adults who have declining immune systems and who have higher rates of diseases like heart failure, valve disease, COPD, asthma, and emphysema. Read our announcement on the previous FDA approval for an RSV vaccine for older adults here.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) still needs to issue their recommendations on the use of the RSV vaccines. Once they do, the recommendations need to be published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) for the vaccines to be covered by insurance companies and to ensure rapid provider uptake. We look forward to timely recommendations and publication so that these shots will be in arms this Fall as we enter respiratory illness season.

The Alliance has done work as part of our Our Best Shot campaign to educate consumers and healthcare professionals about the seriousness of RSV in older adults. The Alliance recently released new educational films Respiratory Syncytial Virus: Not Just a Little Kids Virus, a pediatrician’s story about RSV on video, a social media toolkit, and more to help spread awareness about this virus and how older adults can stay healthy. We are grateful for all of the innovation in the field and for the lives that will be saved with these vaccines.

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