RSV Awareness Week aims to shine a spotlight on an unpredictable and potentially dangerous virus that puts thousands of infants in hospital each year and can cause serious long-term health issues.
Australians from all walks of life will share their RSV stories as a cornerstone of the Week’s activity.
Australia’s first RSV Awareness Week is kicking off with families impacted by the virus sharing their RSV and Me story.
The initiative is driven by Catherine Hughes, Order of Australia recipient and founder of the Immunisation Foundation of Australia, who wanted to put RSV in the spotlight after a personal experience.
Just 18 months after her four-week-old son Riley had died from the complications of whooping cough, Catherine confronted the realities of RSV when her three-week old daughter Lucy was rushed to hospital.
“Being back in hospital with an infant requiring acute respiratory care was a traumatic experience, made even worse by the guilt that I knew so little about RSV,” said Catherine. “Thankfully, with great medical care, Lucy recovered quickly.”
“Many families are not so fortunate.”
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a highly contagious virus that causes seasonal outbreaks in infants and young children, usually during the winter months. It can cause serious short and long-term health issues.
Every year, thousands of Australian infants are hospitalised with RSV related illness, with many requiring intensive care.
Find out more at www.ifa.org.au/RSVandMe