Most young children encounter what’s known as Respiratory Syncytial Virus, or RSV, before age two. It’s a common seasonal virus with flu-like symptoms. But as a new video from the National Coalition for Infant Health explains, premature infants whose health plans don’t cover preventive RSV treatment may suffer – and unnecessarily so. Share the video and don't forget to use the hashtag #RSVAwareness.
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The RSV “Fast Facts ” is an educational resource on the virus, its impact, and its danger for infants, especially preemies whose health plans don’t cover preventive treatment.
Though no vaccine for RSV exists, preventative treatment known as palivizumab can help protect preemies from RSV. The Food and Drug Administration has approved palivizumab for treating premature infants up to 35 weeks gestation. Current guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Infectious Diseases, however, recommend palivizumab for only infants born at 29 weeks gestation or earlier. Because Medicaid and private insurers have adopted these guidelines into their coverage policies, many infants lack access to the one treatment that could protect them from this potentially deadly seasonal virus. RSV season begins in November for most states. Read more about "Protecting Premature Infants From Infectious Diseases."
We want to hear from parents of premature infants who have suffered from RSV and the restrictions on the RSV prophylaxis. Please briefly share your story with us below. Your story won't be shared with anyone else unless we ask you first. Questions? Email Susan Hepworth at firstname.lastname@example.org.