Spike in illnesses threatening hospital beds, but’s not because of COVID-19, doctors say – KSAT San Antonio

by | Oct 21, 2022 | COVID-19

SAN ANTONIO – After a hiatus due to COVID-19, other respiratory viruses are back in large numbers. Doctors warn that cases of the common cold and flu are nearing peak levels from previous years much earlier.San Antonio usually sees high cases in late December or early January, according to University Health.“We’re seeing those higher numbers now in October, which is extremely early and concerning,” said Dr. Bryan Alsip, University Health’s chief medical officer. “It’s very concerning because the hospitals are very busy.”“We have this pent-up demand from COVID, but we also have a lot of other infectious diseases that are out there right now — RSV, rhinovirus,” Alsip added.A recent CDC Surveillance Data study representing about 9% of the total U.S. population reported that cases of RSV tripled over the past two months and are nearing last year’s peaks.“We’re seeing high numbers, and I think it’s not just a local issue,” Alsip said. “It’s a national issue (that) a lot of the hospitals are dealing with a high number of pediatric cases.”The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports over 70% of pediatric hospital beds in the nation are full due to the spike in respiratory illnesses.University Health is working with hospitals at a local level on how to collaborate to help keep children healthy, Alsip said.The first step to staying healthy is prevention through the flu vaccine, according to health care professionals.“Flu cases decreased the past few years because of social distancing and other COVID precautions. But we’re expecting numbers to jump back up this year,” said Dr. Roman McInnerney, referring to a recent article published by University Health. “Hopefu …

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