US hospitalizations rise as respiratory viruses continue to spread: report

US hospitalizations rise as respiratory viruses continue to spread: report

US hospitalizations rise as respiratory viruses continue to spread: report

U.S. health officials warned Monday that nearly every state in the country battling high levels of flu-like illnessesas multiple respiratory viruses continue to circulate amid the holiday season.

According to The Washington Post, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a telebriefing Monday that they have seen signs of an early and severe flu season — with thousands of reported deaths — as cases of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) remain high and infections of the COVID- 19 continue.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky reportedly said levels of doctor visits with respiratory symptoms were high or very high in 47 jurisdictions around Thanksgiving, with the number of flu patients admitted nearly doubling from the previous week.

Experts say there is likely to be a greater spread of respiratory viruses during holiday gatherings and in crowded airports.

US hospitalizations rise as respiratory viruses continue to spread: report

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky delivers her opening statement during a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions hearing on “Next Steps: A Path Forward for the Response to COVID-19” on Capitol Hill in Washington, Nov. . 4. 2021.
(Reuters/Elizabeth Frantz)

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The number of hospitalizations infected with the COVID-19 virus is also increasingwhile the CDC noted that some RSV cases peaked in the South and Southeast.

“While this is encouraging, respiratory viruses continue to spread at high levels across the country, and even in areas where RSV may be declining, our hospital systems are still burdened with large numbers of patients with other respiratory illnesses,” Walensky added.

On Friday, the CDC said 7.5% of outpatient doctor visits last week were for flu-like illnesses and that 44 states reported high or very high flu activity.

A flu shot is ready at the LA Care Community Resource Center and Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plans offered free flu and COVID-19 shots to members and the public on Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, in Lynwood, Calif.

A flu shot is ready at the LA Care Community Resource Center and Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plans offered free flu and COVID-19 shots to members and the public on Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, in Lynwood, Calif.
((AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill))

In Indiana’s largest health system, hospitals have imposed restrictions on visitors.

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“The flu is hitting Marion County hard right now and much earlier than it has in years,” Dr. Virginia Caine, director of the Marion County Department of Public Health, said Monday.

On the West Coast, Washington state health officials said flu activity was very high there at the beginning of the month.

Electron micrography reveals morphological features of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

Electron micrography reveals morphological features of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).
((Photo by BSIP/UIG via Getty Images))

“These respiratory diseases are coming back and they’re back in full force,” said Jason Montemayor, medical director for the Northwest region in Providence.

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Meanwhile, in New Mexico, health leaders — who said hospitals and emergency rooms are operating beyond their licensed capacity — ordered hospitals to return to a “hub-and-spoke” model to get patients the care they need amid the surge of pediatric cases of RSV.

The New Mexico Department of Health issued a public health emergency order on Thursday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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