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CDC Issues Updated RSV Vaccine Guidelines for Older Adults

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced new guidelines for the administration of Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) vaccines to older adults for the upcoming respiratory virus season. The updated recommendations prioritize vaccinations for individuals aged 60 and older, with specific guidelines based on age and health conditions.

Under the new guidelines, the CDC advises that all individuals aged 75 and older should receive the RSV vaccine. Additionally, adults aged 60-74 who are considered at increased risk for severe RSV — including those with chronic medical conditions like lung or heart disease or those residing in nursing homes — are also recommended to receive the vaccine.

This year’s policy update simplifies the decision-making process for both healthcare providers and patients by clarifying eligibility and streamlining previous recommendations. The revised guidelines replace last year’s broader recommendation and are aimed at those who have not previously been vaccinated against RSV, as the vaccine is not required annually.

The update is supported by recent studies evaluating the burden of RSV among older adults and the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of RSV vaccination. These studies incorporate the first real-world data gathered since the initial recommendation of RSV vaccines for this age group.

Healthcare providers are urged to recommend the RSV vaccine to eligible patients and to discuss additional vaccinations needed to prevent other respiratory infections this fall.

CDC Director Dr. Mandy Cohen emphasized the importance of these updates, stating, “The CDC has updated its RSV vaccination recommendation for older adults to prioritize those at highest risk for serious illness from RSV. People 75 or older, or between 60-74 with certain chronic health conditions or living in a nursing home should get one dose of the RSV vaccine to provide an extra layer of protection.”

The best time for vaccination is late summer or early fall, before the onset of the RSV season, to ensure optimal protection against the virus.

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