Palivizumab is a medicine used to prevent serious lung problems and respiratory illnesses caused by respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) in infants at high risk of infection.
RSV is a very common virus in the winter and spring months in Aotearoa New Zealand. In young infants it causes a chest infection called bronchiolitis. This is often a mild infection, but it can become serious in high risk infants under 2 years old. Read more about RSV.
The antibodies in palivizumab helps protect your baby from serious infection and hospitalisation. Palivizumab is not used to treat RSV once someone already has the infection.
Palivizumab is not a vaccine as it does not stimulate your baby's body to produce its own antibodies when they come into contact with that virus in the future.