LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The number of people getting their flu shots has gone down dramatically this year, and Dr. Carrie Wijesinghe of Siena Pediatrics in Henderson said it is frightening.
She believes that we are going to see a very active flu season. She encouraged everyone to get a flu shot, even kids and adults who have already been hit with the flu this season.
“I have seen, in very bad flu seasons, where a child now who has influenza “A,” and months expire and they don’t get the flu vaccine and then get influenza “B” so they’ve had flu twice in one winter.”
Nationwide, it is expected to be a rough winter with a trio of viral threats including Flu, RSV and COVID.
Almost a third of the kids Dr. Wijesinghe has seen have the respiratory infection RSV. It has been hitting babies all the way up to teenagers. It is very contagious, impacting lungs and breathing ability.
Dr. Wijesinghe said, “We are most concerned with kids with RSV below two years of age. Some are babies and toddlers going to the hospital in respiratory distress. Places like Sunrise Hospital, St. Rose-Siena, and even Summerlin they are getting to max capacity.”
RSV is seasonal. It showed up in Southern Nevada earlier this year due to people traveling and no mask mandates.
If one of your children has RSV, she added, you need to constantly be cleaning as it can live on surfaces for up to 24 hours and you should consider separating the siblings.
“If you have a good family member to take care of the child with RSV, and try to separate them for a good week. I know it sounds harsh, but that’s a better way to save a baby from getting RSV and going to the hospital. ”