The time to vaccinate is NOW

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Health Alert Network (HAN) Health Advisory with the aim of alerting healthcare providers to the concerning low vaccination rates against influenza, COVID-19, and RSV (respiratory syncytial virus). The combination of these low vaccination rates, along with the ongoing rise in respiratory disease cases both nationally and internationally, attributed to various pathogens such as influenza viruses, SARS-CoV-2 (the virus responsible for COVID-19), and RSV, has the potential to result in more severe illnesses and a strain on healthcare resources in the weeks ahead.
Over the past four weeks, the nation has witnessed a substantial increase in hospitalizations across all age groups: a 200% rise in influenza cases, a 51% uptick in COVID-19 cases, and a 60% surge in RSV cases.
In light of these concerning trends, healthcare providers are strongly encouraged to promptly administer influenza, COVID-19, and RSV vaccinations to eligible patients, following recommended guidelines. Additionally, healthcare providers should advise antiviral treatments for influenza and COVID-19 in all eligible patients, particularly those who are at a heightened risk of developing severe illnesses, such as older adults and individuals with specific underlying medical conditions. Furthermore, healthcare providers should engage in patient education, including discussing testing options and promoting preventative measures such as covering coughs and sneezes, staying home when unwell, enhancing indoor ventilation at home or work, and practicing thorough hand hygiene, in order to safeguard both their patients and the broader community from respiratory diseases.
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