NHS to commission pharmacies for nationwide RSV vaccination initiative

In a collaborative effort, the National Health Services England (NHSE) is set to deliver the RSV(respiratory syncytial virus) vaccination programme where
pharmacists alongside other healthcare professionals will play a crucial role in administering the vaccine.

The UK Health Security Agency has announced the launch of the new vaccination programme targeting the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), set to begin on 1 September
2024.

Along with GPs, NHS England (NHSE) will “commission a number of community pharmacies to deliver the programme”, ensuring broad accessibility and coverage to protect
two high-risk groups: older adults and pregnant women.

RSV is an RNA virus related to mumps, measles, and human parainfluenza viruses.

It commonly causes coughs and colds in winter, transmitted through droplets and secretions from close contact with infected individuals.

While most RSV infections are mild, infants under six months and the elderly are particularly susceptible to severe diseases like bronchiolitis and pneumonia,
which can lead to hospitalisation.