Respiratory illnesses on the rise in ENC

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) – According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Eastern North Carolina is one of the hot spot regions seeing a rise in respiratory illnesses.

The CDC collected data based on hospital admissions, emergency room visits, wastewater, and deaths.

The data shows an uptick in the number of RSV and flu, along with COVID-19 viruses this fall and winter season, so it is especially important to get vaccinated headed into the holidays.

However, the new Pew survey shows Americans’ trust in science is declining, making wide vaccine administration challenging, but CDC’s Dr. Debra Houry says this should not be the case with the vaccines.

“We monitor all vaccines for safety and actually with the number of vaccines that were administered for COVID-19, it is one of the vaccines we have the most data on, so we do look for adverse events and reactions, so we know these vaccines are safe and effective,” Dr. Houry said.

Pharmacists say although the vaccine time window is tight with Thanksgiving, it is never too late to be protected.

Brain Fulcher, a pharmacy manager at Realo Discount Drugs, says they have administered more than a thousand shots in the past couple of months, and they are stocked up and ready for more people to get vaccinated.

“Once we put that shot in your arms, things start happening, alright and the standard most times, people say two weeks, but you got to know that immunity starts growing on day one, alright, so no, it’s not too late, the sooner we put that shot in your arm, the sooner you are going to be protected,” Fulcher shared.