RSV Surge Hospitalizes 1 in 500 infants
If the recent surge of infections continue, 2022 could be one of the worst RSV seasons in recent memory. Approximately 1 in 500 infants 6 months or younger was hospitalized with the virus since the beginning of October. This is likely an underestimate of the actual number of infections, as a portion of patients who are RSV-positive are not tested. Nearly every child experiences an RSV infection by age 2. Most kids are not hospitalized and recover within 2 weeks. Nevertheless, each year the virus causes 3.6 million children globally to be admitted to the hospital. RSV is also responsible for about 159,000 hospitalizations and 10,000 deaths every year in people 65 years and older. Currently, no reliable and widely accessible RSV vaccines exist. That may soon change, as four RSV vaccines for adults are in the later stages of research. Scientists are also making progress on RSV vaccines for children, but these are a little further behind in development process. Experts in vaccine development say at least one of these vaccines could be approved sometime in 2023.