Canberra Liberals Government will deliver up to 7000 RSV immunisations


ACT Opposition Leader Elizabeth Lee has today announced a Canberra Liberals Government will deliver the RSV immunisation, Beyfortus for up to 7000 newborns and vulnerable infants.

Ms Lee said the announcement, up to $2.6 million will ensure children in the ACT are able to access the immunisation for next Autumn and the Winter RSV season.

“The Canberra Liberals are committed to investing in our healthcare and investing in our children’s health,” Ms Lee said.

“Respiratory Syncytial Virus, or RSV, is one of the most common causes of respiratory infections and breathing problems in babies and children.

“This program will go a long way in protecting vulnerable newborns and infants against RSV and it is important we take action and provide these immunisations for Canberra babies.

“The Canberra Liberals will always put the health of the community first, especially when it comes to the most vulnerable,” Ms Lee concluded.

Shadow Minister for Health Leanne Castley said providing these immunisations is a sensible preventative health measure which will ease the burden and cost of the emergency department and ICU admissions.

“RSV could rapidly turn severe, causing a range of respiratory illness including bronchiolitis or pneumonia and was the most common cause of hospitalisations among infants and young children last year,” Ms Castley said.

“Incredibly, despite Beyfortus being approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration last November, until last month ACT Health’s website was advising Canberrans there was no immunisation to protect against RSV.

“Even now it says the TGA has approved Beyfortus ‘for babies and children up to two years old who are vulnerable to severe disease,’ when in fact it is approved for all neonates and infants born entering their first RSV season.

“Other states including Queensland and Western Australian managed to secure sufficient supplies of Beyfortus to vaccinate newborns as well as vulnerable infants, but the ACT failed to plan for this.

“Clearly the Labor-Greens government has again failed to provide Canberra’s infants with the best available health service. A Canberra Liberals government will do so,” Ms Castley concluded.

The Federal Government is looking to include RSV immunisations on the PBS, if that does not proceed the Canberra Liberals will look to expand the program beyond 2025.