ECU Health one of many hospitals seeing uptick in patients with RSV

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) – Respiratory viruses like RSV and the flu are still on the rise here in Eastern Carolina and across the country.

As the holiday season is approaching, it’s important to ensure a safe and fun time with family by protecting yourself and the ones you love.

“Here lately it’s been a really large number of patients and I think that’s the take-home point. It’s nothing new, we’re not in 2020 like we were with COVID. It’s something we’re familiar with,” ECU Health Infectious Disease Medical Director T. Ryan Gallaher said.

Though RSV is more common in young kids, Gallaher encourages people of all ages to be mindful and help put an end to the spread as more people are interacting with others.

“Those who are older adults, or who don’t have the immunity, or haven’t been around a lot of social interactions the last couple of years and lately since COVID has gone down have been more interactive, if someone doesn’t have immunity to it, and they have certain risk factors who have put them at risk factors,” Gallaher added.

For one Greenville resident, Joseph Tamayo, prioritizing the health of his family matters the most during this coming holiday season.

“We actually took the vaccine for COVID and frequently hand wash, especially with our children,” Tamayo said. “Just mostly staying at home just to be safe. When we do go out, we don’t go to a crowded place as much as possible just to be safe.”

Gallaher also encourages people to use common sense when feeling sick and to follow similar protocols related to the ones in place during the pandemic.

“Vaccination’s a huge one, wearing a mask when you’re around people can keep you from spreading it to others, and that’s the same with RSV and Influenza,” Gallaher said.

RSV is said to typically run its course for one to two weeks and will naturally go away on its own, as there is no specific way of treating the infection.

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