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SALT LAKE CITY — Utahns are excited to get again to their Thanksgiving traditions after two years of restrictions below the coronavirus pandemic. But, simply because COVID-19 will not be as prevalent, doesn’t imply that we need not take precautions.
“The last couple years, COVID was the main thing we were worried about spreading around the family get-together,” mentioned Dr. Per Gesteland, a pediatric hospitalist at Primary Children’s Hospital and University of Utah Health.
This yr there’s much less fear about COVID-19, he mentioned, however more concern about RSV and the flu. Right now, these viruses are nonetheless sending youngsters to the hospital.
“We’re surviving up here,” Gesteland mentioned, referring to Primary Children’s Hospital. “We were running 95-100% capacity, and it’s definitely busy.”
We are dealing with a viral blizzard, he mentioned.
Gesteland helped create high-risk 20 years in the past, which exhibits us that RSV and the flu are on the rise right now throughout a lot of the state. RSV may be particularly powerful on youngsters, the aged, and these with excessive danger well being circumstances.
“It started in October and then has really taken off,” the doctor mentioned. “The slope for our outbreak last year was a little bit gentler. This year it’s a very steep incline, which suggests very rapid transmission throughout our communities.”
The flu is simply beginning to rise in Utah, lagging behind the surge in hospitalizations seen in different states.
“We expect things to just get worse from here on for a few more weeks before we start to see a break in our influenza activity,” Gesteland mentioned.
Meantime, COVID-19 nonetheless has greater than 120 folks hospitalized statewide.
On common, one individual continues to be dying every day from problems associated to COVID-19.
“COVID is still out there, and it’s still definitely causing trouble,” the doctor mentioned.
Gatherings of wholesome folks needs to be tremendous this vacation, he mentioned. If you or your youngsters are sick, keep dwelling and keep away from contact with susceptible folks. He advises that we wash our palms usually and keep away from shut contact with anybody coughing or sneezing.
“We’ve made a lot of progress with getting people vaccinated against COVID,” Gesteland mentioned. “So we’re all feeling a little bit better, especially vulnerable populations.”