LUBBOCK, Texas— A new Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) vaccine rolling out this year may see a short supply around the county. Here in Lubbock, Dr. Brian Payne, chief medical officer at UMC Children’s Hospital said the recent vaccine rollout is a unique one.
“Moms can now receive a vaccination,” Dr. Payne said. “The difference is for the mom, it’s like a traditional vaccine where your body creates an immune response for the babies is slightly different, where they actually create the antibodies and give their baby those antibodies.”
After receiving approval from the Food and Drug Association earlier this year, the new vaccine, Nirsevemab, has been frequently requested by families.
“More and more families now understand that it’s an option and they want that for their child, especially for families who have maybe seen this with another child who’s been sicker and has gone through difficulties,” Dr. Payne said.
With high demand, coupled with a late approval, Dr. Payne said only so many doses were made available, causing shortages in some areas.
“This is a medication or a vaccine that really has just in the last month been able to be ordered and supplied and so they’re trying to also weigh how many people want it versus not,” Dr. Payne said.
Dr. Payne said UMC Children’s Hospital has not seen a shortage yet, but availability may depend on your provider and clinic.
“The health department has also received some doses, so there are multiple areas that you could look at,” Dr. Payne said. “But for the youngest children, those small children, we’re getting a reasonable amount of supply.”
Dr. Payne said the CDC recommended babies under six months old, who weigh less or have an underlying health condition, get vaccinated as they are the group with the highest risk of catching RSV.
Dr. Payne said many parents are struggling with the idea of how new the vaccine is and unsure whether to get it or not.
“I think the most important piece is that the American Academy of Pediatrics doesn’t really recommend these things unless they think the evidence is very strong and they come out strongly in favor of allowing this to be given to kids and encouraging it to be done in clinics,” Dr. Payne said.
Dr. Payne said if a mom is interested in the vaccine for herself (Abrysvo) or her newborn baby, check with your OB-GYN or Pediatrician on availability.