RSV Cases on the Rise

Posted 11/18/2022 in Regional Medical Center

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a highly contagious illness most commonly affecting infants and toddlers. RSV cases have increased throughout the country, state and here at Regional Medical Center (RMC). Unfortunately, there is a very limited hospital capacity for seriously ill young children. 

“With the increase in cases, we are seeing an increase in RSV hospitalizations. We are taking the precautions needed to treat this contagious illness and doing everything we can for patients and their families,” shared Heather Ries, Chief Nursing Officer. 

RSV symptoms can often be disguised as the common flu. However, for children two-years-old and younger symptoms can lead to severe cough, breathing problems and fatigue. 

“We encourage parents to closely monitor their child's breathing, especially children aged less than two,” shares Jodi Helle, RMC Hospitalist. “Two things you can do at home is keeping your child well hydrated and nasal suctioning on a regular basis. Using a few drops of saline in each nostril before suctioning can help thin and loosen the mucus.”  

This is a highly contagious illness so it’s important to focus on measures we can take to prevent the spread. Ensure that your child(ren) are up-to-date with immunizations and know how important it is to receive an annual flu shot (anyone 6 months and older are eligible). If you and your family are ill, consider isolating yourself from others. For those with infants (less than 3 months) try to decrease the number of visitors and stay away from family/friends who are ill.

Call your healthcare provider as soon as your child begins to show severe symptoms such as wheezing, working hard to breathe, decreased activity, prolonged illness, retracting of ribs or high fever. We are here to care for you and your family, please do not hesitate to contact us.