Saturday, July 13, 2024

CDC Updates Respiratory Syncytial Virus Immunization Guidelines for Older Adults

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Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) immunization recommendations have been updated by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), significantly impacting public health policy for older adults. GSK plc announced that ACIP now recommends routine RSV immunization for all adults aged 75 and older.

Additionally, the committee advises RSV vaccination for adults aged 60-74 who are at increased risk for severe RSV disease. These new recommendations replace the previous guidance of shared clinical decision-making for these age groups and are expected to improve access to respiratory syncytial virus vaccines, particularly benefiting the estimated 23 million US adults aged 75 and older.

ACIP’s decision to recommend routine RSV immunization for adults aged 75 and older marks a significant shift in public health strategy, as this population is particularly vulnerable to severe RSV outcomes, and routine vaccination can help reduce the incidence of severe disease and hospitalizations. For adults aged 60-74 who are at increased risk for severe RSV disease, ACIP also recommends respiratory syncytial virus immunization, aiming to protect individuals with underlying health conditions that make them more susceptible to severe RSV outcomes.

ACIP Delays Decision on Respiratory Syncytial Virus Vaccine for Adults 50-59

ACIP has postponed its vote on recommending RSV immunization for adults aged 50-59 who are at increased risk for severe respiratory syncytial virus disease until additional data become available. GSK continues to gather data to support future policy decisions. Arexvy (Respiratory Syncytial Virus Vaccine, Adjuvanted) is the first and only vaccine FDA-approved for adults aged 50-59 who are at increased risk for RSV-LRTD, having received approval on June 7, 2024.

More than 13 million US adults aged 50-59 have at least one medical condition that increases their risk for severe respiratory syncytial virus outcomes. Annually, RSV is estimated to cause approximately 42,000 hospitalizations in adults aged 50-64 years. This data underscores the importance of evaluating the benefits of extending RSV vaccination recommendations to younger at-risk populations.

In making its recommendations, ACIP reviewed available efficacy and immunogenicity data on each licensed RSV vaccine for adults. The committee also considered real-world surveillance data from the FDA and CDC databases, including post-marketing safety data on Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS). GSK maintains that the totality of the evidence supports the favorable benefit-risk profile of Arexvy, reinforcing the vaccine’s safety and efficacy.

Respiratory Syncytial Virus

ACIP’s Respiratory Syncytial Virus Vaccine Guidelines Await CDC and HHS Approval

The ACIP recommendations will be forwarded to the director of the CDC and the US Department of Health and Human Services for review and approval. Once approved, the final recommendations will be published in a future issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). This publication will formalize the new guidelines, ensuring that healthcare providers nationwide are informed and can implement the updated recommendations.

The updated recommendations by ACIP have the potential to significantly enhance public health outcomes by increasing vaccination rates among older adults and those at higher risk for severe respiratory syncytial virus disease. Routine immunization for adults aged 75 and older, coupled with targeted immunization for at-risk individuals aged 60-74, can lead to substantial reductions in RSV-related hospitalizations and severe disease cases.

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The ACIP’s updated recommendations represent a critical advancement in the fight against RSV, particularly for vulnerable older populations. By endorsing routine and targeted immunization strategies, the committee aims to mitigate the impact of RSV, reduce healthcare burdens, and improve the quality of life for millions of older Americans. As GSK continues to provide additional data, there is potential for further expansions in vaccination recommendations, particularly for the younger at-risk adult population, further strengthening the public health response to respiratory syncytial virus.


Resource: GlaxoSmithKline, June 26, 2024

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