Globally, an estimated 33 million young children are diagnosed with RSV each year, over 3 million cases require hospitalisation. Annually, the virus causes 118 000 deaths. Shocking numbers that need extra attention. During the RSV Awareness Week, which takes place yearly, around mid-November, we interviewed our Consultant Life Sciences, Paul Peeters, on the subject and on Modis Life Sciences’ involvement.
- Q: What is RSV Awareness Week?
Paul: RSV or Respiratory Syncytial Virus is a virus that infects the lungs and respiratory system. To raise awareness, the RSV Patient Network has started an annual RSV Awareness Week. This year’s edition, with the theme ‘Follow your instincts!’, has one goal: emphasizing the importance of parents trusting their instincts when they feel something is wrong with their child. The campaign shows the different stages parents experience whilst caring for a child with RSV.
- Q: Why is it organized now?
Paul: It’s a recurring issue that falls right during the peak of the RSV season. Two potential vaccines and a monoclonal antibody to protect against this virus are in Phase III of the clinical studies, which has been shared widely via the RESCEU press release. Simultaneously, a group of scientists from the ‘REspiratory Syncytial virus Consortium in EUrope’ (in short RESCEU) published a supplement in the Journal of Infectious Diseases (Nov 2020) revealing the impact of RSV as the most common cause of severe respiratory illness in infants and children worldwide.