COVID-19 infections remain the leading cause of hospitalization and death among seasonal respiratory viruses, U.S. health officials say.
Overall, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in its weekly report, respiratory illnesses are on the increase across the U.S.
These illnesses lead to about 15,000 hospitalizations and 1,000 deaths weekly in the U.S., officials say.
This week, the CDC said a new variant of COVID-19 discovered in August had tripled its cases in the last two weeks.
Cases of flu infection are on the rise, while cases of RSV — which mostly affects the old and the young — may have now peaked.
The CDC reports that 11 states are now tracking elevated flu cases, up from seven states in early November. Most of these states are in the South or Southwest.
RSV cases surged in the last month, leading to increased hospitalizations in states including Georgia and Texas. But Dr. Mandy Cohen, head of the CDC, says case counts are expected to reach their worst now or within the next week.
The CDC is also keeping track of pneumonia outbreaks affecting mostly children in Massachusetts and in Ohio, but officials have said "there is no evidence" of an unusual cause.
Health officials in Ohio reported 145 cases of pneumonia in children since August, and said most of the children had recovered at home. Officials said most of these cases had been caused by common bacteria and viruses.
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