RSV must be taken seriously

Promotion of COVID-19 vaccines is something we do a lot of at Access Press. It’s so important for those of […]

Jane McClure headshot

Promotion of COVID-19 vaccines is something we do a lot of at Access Press. It’s so important for those of us with disabilities to do all we can to stay healthy.

I have too many friends who ruefully post social media pictures about trips they can no longer take, activities that are not possible and even basic errands they miss. Long COVID is such a disabling reality. On top of other disabilities, it really changes lives.

My own situation has been changed by COVID-19 and it’s hard to think of what has been lost. Don’t have the same thing happen to you.

And sorry to not be spreading some holiday cheer today, but we also must be vigilant against the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

We’ve seen a spike start over the past couple of weeks. If you know someone who’s been sick, there’s a good chance they have RSV.

Several media reports urge precautions as holidays got rolling in November.

RSV can be tough to deal with. If you have children, especially children with disabilities, it can be even more difficult. I just saw a news report describing how the sudden surge of RSV illness arrived in late October for Minnesota pediatricians.

“We’re getting lots of colds, snotty nose, coughs, fevers coming in,” Dr. Elizabeth Placzek, a pediatrician with Children’s Minnesota told FOX 9. “We’re pretty busy.”

RSV has symptoms that might be deceiving. It’s all too easy to think that you are dealing with a cold or the flu or even COVID-19. Coughs and fever can mean digging out the test kits. And then . . .

For most people, it’s either a cold or RSV. And RSV must be taken seriously. It can lead to breathing problems and pneumonia. That can be serious if not fatal, especially for the young and the old, and for people with underlying conditions and disabilities.

RSV is seasonal. In the Fox 9 report, Placzek said spikes are expected at this time of year as cold weather drives people indoors for gatherings.

“These are things that are droplet spread,” she said. “So coughing, sneezing, being close to someone is how you can catch it.”

Fox 9 also reported that a recently published study also found prior COVID infection makes kids significantly more susceptible to RSV, which partly explains the especially big spike last winter.

So here we go again. Mask up, keep those hands clean and stay home when sick. Find out when and where RSV vaccines are available. Vaccines can be in short supply, so be diligent and keep checking.

Another note: Access Press will be closed over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend so we can spend time with family and friends. The December print issue is done, but remember to use the online event listings on our website. Go to listings in the upper right corner and you’ll find out how to post an event. Remember to add the event accommodations!

RSV, flu, and COVID-19 VACCINES: A Critical Tool in the Fight Against Antimicrobial Resistance Visit for more information.

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