NHS to roll-out breakthrough vaccine to tackle bronchiolitis-causing winter cough virus which puts 29,000 children and 18,000 adults in hospital each year
- Scientists said Britons will get new vaccine for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)
- NHS data will identify those who can most benefit from the new Moderna jab
- Results show RSV jab 84% effective at preventing cough and fever in the elderly
Children and vulnerable adults could soon receive a breakthrough vaccine to protect them from one of the most common winter bugs.
In a media briefing on Friday, scientists announced the first step in vaccinating eligible Britons against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), best known for causing lung problem bronchiolitis in youngsters.
Researchers will use NHS data to identify those who would best benefit from the jab, as part of a Government-funded project. These patients will then be recommended to receive the vaccine.
It comes a week after trials by drug firm Moderna showed its RSV jab was 84 per cent effective at preventing a cough and fever in older adults.
Children and vulnerable adults could soon receive a breakthrough vaccine to protect them from one of the most common winter bugs (stock photo)
Similar research was conducted during the Covid pandemic to identify the highest risk patients to prioritise for the vaccine.
RSV hospitalises about 29,000 children and 18,000 adults each year – and until now, no effective vaccine has been available. Experts involved in the study say rolling out the vaccine will drastically reduce the number of hospitalisations.
‘RSV vaccines are going to be available in due course,’ said Professor Aziz Sheikh, a primary care research and development expert at the University of Edinburgh who is heading up the study.
‘We are preparing the ground for this.’
The study is part of a first-of-its-kind scheme which will see the Government fund 16 research projects designed to prevent another NHS winter crisis.
Scientists announced the first step in vaccinating eligible Britons against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), best known for causing lung problem bronchiolitis in youngsters (stock photo)
Other plans include testing if advanced computer software can reduce ambulance waiting times and analysing the impact of unheated homes on hospital admissions.
The entire scheme will cost about £800,000 and experts believe results could be seen by March.
‘I am all too aware of the enormous challenges faced by the healthcare system this winter,’ said Professor Cathie Sudlow, chief scientist at Health Data Research UK – the UK’s institute for health data science.
‘It’s critical that we use data rapidly and responsibly to support the NHS.’
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