The flu virus is finally back solemnly. Flu season activity is high across the US, and experts expect a lot more cases and hospitalizations will occur in the coming weeks. One bright spot is that this year’s vaccines seem to be well-adjusted to the current situation. circulating flu strainstherefore, they must provide valuable protection against viral infection.
On Monday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released latest weekly findings routine flu monitoring program that tracks both flu-related hospitalizations and outpatient visits for flu-like illnesses.
Based on these data, 35 states and territories have high to very high flu activity, particularly eastern and southern regions of the country. The cumulative hospitalization rate at this point in the year (week 46) is also in 2010-2011 flu season. Overall, the CDC estimates that there have been at least 6.2 million illnesses, 53,000 hospitalizations and 2,900 deaths from flu since October, including 12 confirmed child deaths. These cases will only increase as there is still a lot left to enjoy the holiday.
“We’re likely to see an increase in the coming weeks,” says Lynnette Brammer, an epidemiologist and leader of the CDC’s flu monitoring team. withld NBC News.
Since the arrival of covid-19 in late 2019, the flu has become much less common. There was no flu in the winter of 2020-2021, whereas last winter’s flu season was strange but still much lighter than usual. There may be several reasons why a so-called “twindemia” involving the flu and covid-19 never happens. speculation that respiratory viruses in general tend to be mutually exclusive. But an important factor behind Its disappearance is believed to be physical distancing measures taken by many, either mandatory or voluntary, to limit the spread of covid, which may have worked even better to prevent less contagious diseases such as the flu. These measures have been greatly reduced, and in turn many garden variety infections have returned.
For example, the US saw a more severe and earlier period.not including-The usual peak in infections from respiratory syncytial virus or RSV this year. RSV typically causes a mild cold in most patients, but can be life threatening for young people children and old people. Many children’s hospitals due to the increase reported even higher levels of RSV-related hospitalizations than those seen during the normal RSV season. There is some speculation that it was infected by covid-19 weakens children’s immune systems, making them more vulnerable to severe RSV, but many experts to dispute that the decrease in population immunity alone is sufficient to explain these increases.
Fortunately, RSV cases are now slow down in the USA. And as many people still get sick and die from covid-19, this winter, as in the past, comes the threat of a major surge. stays low for now. we may even take According to the CDC, this year’s vaccine has been relatively lucky with the flu, as it pairs well with most circulating flu strains.
Of course, just because this winter will not be as bad as the last winters in terms of respiratory diseases. doesn’t mean we should neglect reason measures. Getting your updated covid-19 booster and annual flu shot will reduce your risk of snot-related misery and serious complications this holiday season, and other measures like staying home when sick or wearing a mask in high-risk situations can help limit the spread of flu. , covid-19, RSV and other germs.