Reduction of COVID-19 and related public health measures may inflict a rise in RSV infection

Foley DA, Yeoh DK, Minney-Smith CA, Martin AC, Mace AO, Sikazwe CT, Le H, Levy A, Moore HC, Blyth CC
During the current COVID-19 pandemic, RSV infections have fallen of the radar. We have seen a tremendous decrease in RSV infection rates, which usually peak during the fall and winter seasons. This raises the question: what is going to happen when COVID-19 cases decline and public health measures are reduced? Foley and his colleagues highlight the situation in Western Australia in their letter to the editor. Since the end of the winter season, there has been an absence of SARS-COV-2 transmission in Western Australia and hereafter only limited social distancing measures were continued. In their letter, the authors link RSV infection rates in Western Australian children to the simultaneous corona regulations in place. An increase in RSV activity is seen starting from September when safety measures were loosened up. The rising number of cases have exceeded the median seasonal peak from the last 8 years. These findings raise concerns for RSV control in other countries and areas, when moderation of COVID-19 related measures may bring upon a surge in RSV infection.