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Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)

Alternate name: RSV

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Fact sheet - Health conditions directory

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is a common cause of respiratory illness. RSV is often the cause of the ‘common cold’. RSV can affect people of all ages. Repeated RSV infection is common in children. Children under 3 years of age and older adults who have health problems involving the heart, lungs or immune system are at risk of serious illness and may need to be admitted to hospital. Babies, especially under 6 months of age, can develop chest infections such as bronchiolitis or pneumonia. RSV is highly infectious. Outbreaks of acute respiratory illness in settings such as early childhood education and care services and residential care facilities can be from RSV infection.

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Enhanced surveillance for public health units

Last updated: 5 June 2023

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