Cardiologist Peter McCullough, M.D., M.P.H., told The Defender, “Vaccination of the mother for passive immunization of the infant is an unnecessary and risky strategy that will undoubtedly lead to fetal loss or premature deliveries when deployed on a large scale.”
An advisory committee to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last week recommended a new vaccine for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) — the first such vaccine for pregnant women designed to target newborns, NBC News reported.
In an 11-1 vote on Friday, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) endorsed Pfizer’s Abrysvo. The vote was followed by a formal recommendation by CDC Director Mandy Cohen, completing the final regulatory step before distribution of the vaccine to the public can begin.
Cohen praised the new vaccine, calling it “another new tool we can use this fall and winter to help protect lives.” Cohen encouraged parents to talk to their doctors about “how to protect their little ones against serious RSV illness.”
“Vaccination of the mother for passive immunization of the infant is an unnecessary and risky strategy that will undoubtedly lead to fetal loss or premature deliveries when deployed on a large scale.
“As a clinician, my greatest concern with any vaccination in pregnancy is provocation of fever, which is one of the most common determinants of preterm labor and in some cases fetal loss or premature delivery.”
The CDC’s formal approval of Abrysvo comes just weeks after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the vaccine.
Abrysvo will be administered to pregnant women during the third trimester of pregnancy, Reuters reported. According to ACIP members, vaccination late in pregnancy “is likely to reduce a possible risk of preterm births and complications that might arise from taking it earlier.”
According to NBC News, “The single-dose shot … spurs the production of antibodies in the mother that transfer through the placenta.” Referencing clinical trial data published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), NBC News said Abrysvo’s “protection lasts through their first six months.”
According to Reuters, ACIP member Dr. Katherine Poehling, a professor of pediatrics and epidemiology and prevention at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, said, “RSV throughout my career has been a difficult disease with just supportive care treatment because there have been no options so today is an exciting day.”