As the holidays approach, health professionals, become concerned about the potential spread of Covid-19, which they refer to as a “tripledemic.”
Despite the United States’ declaration that Covid-19 is no longer a hazard, experts claim that humans risk several additional dangers. Numerous respiratory pathogens, both old and novel, require constant observation. They claim that some of them turn hostile when they locate a host.
These pathogens have developed, and an infected person may have more severe adverse effects. Additionally, a Thanksgiving gathering will allow these diseases to spread and enter other age groups.
“We’re facing an onslaught of three viruses — COVID, RSV and influenza. All simultaneously. We’re calling this a tripledemic,” said Vanderbilt University infectious disease specialist Dr. William Schaffner.
Several ancient illnesses once again infected the population, claim health organizations. For instance, early this year, health institutions saw an extraordinary increase in the respiratory syncytial virus or RSV. Babies and younger people without protection contracted the illness.
Across the nation, several pediatric hospitals are still concerned about RSV’s comeback. And many parents wait for their sick children in hospitals for longer periods.
“Intensive care units are at or above capacity in every children’s hospital in the United States right now. So it’s very, very scary for parents,” said Amy Knight, the Children’s Hospital Association president.
“Influenza has hit the southeastern United States. Then, it moved into the Southwest. Then, it’s going up the East Coast and into the Midwest with some ferocity,” Schaffner added.
The threat of the tripledemic
Every week, health institutions nationwide witnessed an increase in flu cases. Due to the increase in flu cases and other respiratory illnesses, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also issued alerts. And as the nation enters the Christmas season, which begins around Thanksgiving, the CDC becomes more anxious.
There will be an increase in interstate travel, leading to the spread of illnesses like the flu.
“Flu activity is high right now and continuing to increase. The good news is that the vaccines this year are well-matched to the currently circulating viruses, and there is still time to get vaccinated,” said CDC’s influenza division epidemiologist Lynnette Brammer.
“These holiday celebrations, with all their travel and close contact, usually function as virus accelerators. We’re spending a lot of time with each other. We’re laughing and breathing deeply. And that’s an ideal environment for these respiratory viruses to spread to others,” Schaffner warned.
Covid-19 subvariants emerges
The US repulsed Covid’s initial assault. New variations, though, have appeared. Additionally, studies show that these variations beat earlier ones in efficacy.
As a result, the CDC and the World Health Organization closely monitor new omicron variations that can potentially be more lethal than previous COVID-19 variants.
“What is this all going to mean for COVID? Will we see a January/February resurgence of COVID that will be fairly significant? That may yet be coming,” said Dr. David Rubin from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
“I’m hopeful, given where we are with COVID, that we’re not looking at something like last winter. But at the end of the day, Mother Nature gets the final word on these things,” added Dr. Ashish Jha, the Covid019 coordinator of the White House.
Photo Credit: Science Source/ NIAID