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Examining the entire delayed respiratory syncytial virus season in Western Australia
  1. David Anthony Foley1,2,
  2. Linny Kimly Phuong3,
  3. Joseph Peplinski4,
  4. Selina Mei Jy Lim5,
  5. Wei Hao Lee4,
  6. Aoife Keane4,
  7. Jessica Win See Wong4,
  8. Cara A Minney-Smith1,
  9. Andrew C Martin4,
  10. Ariel O Mace4,
  11. Chisha T Sikazwe1,6,
  12. Huong Le2,
  13. Avram Levy1,6,
  14. Meredith Borland7,8,
  15. Briony Hazelton1,5,
  16. Hannah C Moore2,
  17. Christopher Blyth1,2,5,9,
  18. Daniel Yeoh5,
  19. Asha C Bowen2,5
  1. 1 Microbiology, PathWest Laboratory Medicine Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  2. 2 Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines and Infecitous Diseases, University of Western Australia, Telethon Kids Institute, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  3. 3 Infection and Immunity, Murdoch Children's Research Institute, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
  4. 4 Department of General Paediatrics, Perth Children’s Hospital, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  5. 5 Infectious Diseases Department, Perth Children’s Hospital, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  6. 6 Infection and Immunity, Biomedical Science, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  7. 7 Emergency Medicine, Perth Children's Hospital, Nedlands, Western Australia, Australia
  8. 8 Divisions of Paediatrics and Emergency Medicine, University of Western Australia, Crawley, Western Australia, Australia
  9. 9 School of Paediatrics and Child Health, University of Western Australia, Subiaco, Western Australia, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr David Anthony Foley, Microbiology, PathWest Laboratory Medicine Western Australia, Perth, WA 6009, Australia; drdavidanthonyfoley{at}

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An interseasonal resurgence of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) was observed in Western Australia at the end of 2020. Our previous report describing this resurgence compared the 2019 and 2020 calendar years, capturing only part of the 2020/21 season.1 This follow-up report compares the entire summer 2020/21 season with the 2019 winter season.


RSV season onset and offset were defined as the point when RSV-positive detections per week crossed ≥1.2% year total.2 The 2020/21 year was centred on the peak 4 weeks. Respiratory infection coded admissions >12 hours between 1 January 2019 and 31 March 2021 were identified using hospital coding data.1 RSV-positive admissions were stratified by clinical diagnosis into bronchiolitis, other acute lower respiratory infection (OALRI), wheeze responsive to salbutamol (WRS) and other. Data collected, definitions and statistical analysis were performed as described.1


Of 6171 respiratory-coded admissions, 1075 (17.4%) tested positive for RSV. Clinical data were available for 1072 (online supplemental figure 1); 961 (89.6%) fell within the 2019 or 2020/21 RSV season. The …

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  • Contributors All authors contributed to the conception of this work. DAF, SL, JP, WHL, AK and JWSW contributed to the acquisition of data. DAF, CAM-S, AL and LKP led the data analysis and interpretation. All authors critically appraised the work, contributing to the intellectual content and approved the final version prior to submission. All authors agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Supplemental material This content has been supplied by the author(s). It has not been vetted by BMJ Publishing Group Limited (BMJ) and may not have been peer-reviewed. Any opinions or recommendations discussed are solely those of the author(s) and are not endorsed by BMJ. BMJ disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on the content. Where the content includes any translated material, BMJ does not warrant the accuracy and reliability of the translations (including but not limited to local regulations, clinical guidelines, terminology, drug names and drug dosages), and is not responsible for any error and/or omissions arising from translation and adaptation or otherwise.

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