NewsCovering Colorado

Actions

Triple threat: Early flu and RSV could join current COVID risk

Posted at 8:18 PM, Sep 05, 2023

COLORADO SPRINGS — Infectious disease experts from UCHealth see reason for an early start to protecting you and your family against respiratory diseases typically associated with colder months.

The new COVID variant has been causing a rapid rise of cases over the last couple of weeks and now tracking of flu and RSV viruses shows they could start early.

“We do think that we'll see a lot of flu cases in the end of October, early November,” said Dr. Larissa Pisney who is an Infectious Disease Physician with UCHealth.

Infectious disease experts use data from other parts of the world to track flu and RSV trends.

Pisney said, “What we saw in the southern hemisphere, so their winter is our summer, we saw that covid peaked and then flu and RSV followed.”

It creates concern that the same thing could happen here.

“Certainly seeing hospitalizations related to all three could put a lot of strain on the healthcare system," said Pisney.

The doctor adds that prevention can start now.

Flu vaccines are now available.

A new COVID booster vaccine should be out within the month.

And, researchers have just introduced new ways of reducing RSV risk with a vaccine for high-risk adults and a treatment for kids that mimics antibodies to possibly boost their immune system.

“We're very fortunate to be moving into this era where we have more tools against RSV for those who are at highest risk,” said Pisney.

The doctor also advocates for simple but effective measures like washing hands and staying home when you feel sick.

____

Watch KOAA News5 on your time, anytime with our free streaming app available for your Roku, FireTV, AppleTV and Android TV. Just search KOAA News5, download and start watching.