Abstract We discuss the suitability of innate immune stimulation in acute respiratory infection post-exposure prophylaxis. The induction of innate immunity can be used to reduce susceptibility to immune-evasive pathogens (coronavirus, influenza virus, respiratory syncytial virus and rhinovirus). After the emergence of multiple SARS-CoV-2 variants, scientists are debating whether new variants could affect vaccine efficacy and how antigens could be redesigned to compensate. In addition, there is insufficient vaccine production to cover universal demand, and equitable vaccine distribution is a global challenge. Given these factors, non-specific immune stimulators may be suitable for a quick first response in the case of a suspected or early respiratory infection. Our group completed several HeberNasvac studies in healthy volunteers and patients with respiratory infections, and is currently starting large clinical trials in patients with early SARS-CoV-2 infections. This nasal formulation of hepatitis B vaccine has demonstrated its capacity to stimulate innate immunity markers (TLR3, TLR7 and TLR8 in tonsils) at the virus’ entry site, in systemic compartments (HLA class II in monocytes and lymphocytes) and in the activation of dendritic cells, lymphocytes and other cell lines in vitro and ex vivo. In addition, research generated by the current pandemic may obtain results useful for treating other acute respiratory infections, which have long been main drivers of mortality among older adults and in early childhood.