The rate of reported Covid cases in Arlington has not changed much in the past two weeks, while there are new worries about kids getting sick with other diseases.
Across the country childhood respiratory illnesses are surging, putting a strain on hospitals.
Here in Arlington, Virginia Hospital Center is seeing RSV and flu cases among kids, in addition to Covid, according to emergency department chief Mike Silverman.
From Silverman’s weekly public Facebook post on Friday.
During my last shift, I had kids infected with COVID, influenza, and RSV. By far, the sickest of the three was the one with RSV. Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a fairly common virus that causes something called bronchiolitis. This is a respiratory tract infection that can cause coughing, shortness of breath, and a low oxygen level. It impacts kids less than 2 much harder than the kids who are older. It is also possible to get as an adult though we typically stop testing for long before a child is a teenager. We’re seeing a lot more cases of RSV then we typically see this time of year. While only a fraction of kids who have RSV require hospitalization, we are already seeing pediatric intensive care units (PICU) in the area reach critical occupancy levels.
Unfortunately, this means that some kids who would normally be placed in a PICU may spend additional time in the emergency department waiting for a bed to become available. Additionally, there may be additional time a patient spends in another hospital’s ER waiting to be transferred to one of the handful of hospitals in the DMV that have PICU beds, from whichever emergency department the patient was initially seen in. It also means that some patients who are borderline and might often get a PICU bed versus a hospital floor bed, may not get the PICU bed because beds are prioritized to sicker patients. (We saw all of this with COVID during our big surges, just in the adult population). […]
Of course, there is a trickle-down effect to this as well. Anytime we have patients boarding in the emergency department, (boarders are broadly defined as patients who require hospitalization but the hospital doesn’t have space for them at the moment so they stay in the ER and get their care), we then have beds that are not available to be used for the new patients that are arriving to the emergency department.
Covid and flu are continuing to infect kids and adults in Arlington, though not at surge-level rates.
The county is seeing a seven-day moving average of about 32 reported Covid cases per day, according to the Virginia Dept. of Health, a figure that hasn’t fluctuated much over the past couple of weeks.
VDH this week stopped reporting Covid test positivity rates, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website puts Arlington’s current positivity rate at 7.5% and falling. Arlington is still well within the CDC’s “low” Covid level guidelines, with fewer than 100 weekly cases per 100,000 in population (the “medium” level threshold is 200 weekly cases per 100,000 people).
Arlington County’s health department last week announced that the new, bivalent Covid booster shots are now available from the county for kids ages 5 and up.
From a press release:
Appointments are now available for a free bivalent (updated) COVID-19 booster for children ages 5 and older through Arlington County Public Health. Boosters are available as of Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022, by appointment only. No walk-ins will be allowed.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone ages 5 and older gets one updated booster if it has been at least two months since they completed their primary series or booster vaccination.
Make an appointment online with Arlington County Public Health though the Vaccine Administration Management System (VAMS). If you need ADA accommodations or require assistance scheduling your appointment with Arlington County Public Health, call 703-228-7999.
Additional opportunities to get COVID-19 vaccines and boosters are available in and around Arlington through pharmacies and other medical providers–visit vaccines.gov to find a location near you.
Flu cases statewide are on the rise at last check, meanwhile, with the CDC reporting that Virginia is has “moderate” level of flu infections.
In a press release Monday, VDH said that there are “concerning, early signs” of a tough flu season.
Today, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) announced that this year’s flu season is already showing concerning, early signs that it may be worse than in recent years. More people are seeking care in hospitals and urgent care centers for influenza-like illness than at this point in previous years, particularly young children aged 0-4 years. Virginia health officials encourage everyone aged six months and older to get a flu vaccine this fall, with rare exception.
“The best way to reduce the risk of flu and its potentially serious complications is to get vaccinated each year” said State Health Commissioner Colin M. Greene, MD, MPH. “This is why I am encouraging Virginians to receive their annual flu shot and practice preventive healthy habits. These include staying home when sick, using your elbow to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, and frequently washing your hands. Parents should help their children learn healthy habits and discuss vaccination with their children’s pediatric caregiver.”
The 2022-2023 seasonal flu vaccine is designed to protect against the influenza viruses that research indicates will be most common. For most people, September and October are generally good times to be vaccinated against flu. However, even if you are not able to get vaccinated until November or later, vaccination is still valuable because flu most commonly peaks in February and significant activity can continue into May.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports it is safe to get both a COVID-19 vaccine and a flu vaccine at the same time, if you are eligible and the timing coincides. The updated COVID-19 bivalent boosters provide targeted protection against the original virus strain and the circulating Omicron sub variants (BA.4 and BA.5).
Another respiratory illness circulating in Virginia is the Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV). Emergency department and urgent care visits with diagnosed RSV have quadrupled and have been rapidly increasing in Virginia’s syndromic surveillance system since early September. RSV is common and usually causes mild to moderate symptoms in most people but can be very dangerous for young infants or those who are immunocompromised. Practice preventive health habits to reduce chance of infection and call your healthcare provider if you or your child is having difficulty breathing, not drinking enough fluids, or experiencing worsening symptoms.
Both the flu shot and COVID-19 vaccines are widely available in Virginia at many different locations, including pharmacies and health departments. To learn more and to get help finding vaccines, contact the Call Center at 877-VAX-IN-VA (877-829-4682, TTY users call 7-1-1). Assistance is available in English, Spanish, and more than 100 other languages. Visit www.vaccinate.virginia.gov or www.vaccines.gov to find a vaccine near you.
Contact your healthcare provider or your local health department for additional information on how to prevent flu, COVID-19 and RSV. Weekly reports on influenza activity in Virginia are posted on the VDH influenza surveillance webpage.
Good Thursday evening, Arlington. Today we published articles that were read a total of 9572 times… so far. 📈 Top stories The following are the most-read articles for today —…
This past week saw 37 homes sold in Arlington. The least expensive condo, single-family home or townhouse sale over the past seven days was $226,000 while the most expensive was…
Arlington County will be stabilizing part of the Donaldson Run stream to prevent erosion. On Saturday, the Arlington County Board approved without discussion a more than $888,200 contract with Sagres…
A South Arlington intersection that has seen two pedestrian-involved crashes this year, including one last week, is set to be updated to improve safety. In the evening on Tuesday, March…
EDBS Dental Billing Solutions is pleased to announce that it has achieved compliance with the federally mandated standards of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) through the use of Compliancy Group’s proprietary HIPAA methodology, The Guard® compliance tracking software, and HIPAA Seal of Compliance®.
The HIPAA Seal of Compliance is issued to organizations that have implemented an effective HIPAA compliance program through the use of The Guard, Compliancy Group’s proprietary compliance tracking solution.
Clients and patients are becoming more aware of the requirements of HIPAA compliance and how the regulation protects their personal information. Forward-thinking providers like EDBS Dental Billing Solutions choose the HIPAA Seal of Compliance to differentiate their services.
“Since the nature of our business being exclusively remote, we take HIPAA compliance very seriously. With the help of Compliancy Group, we are able to take steps to fortify our systems to protect PHI information and familiarize each employee about HIPAA and how we can further safeguard PHI data.” said EDBS Dental Billing Solutions founder Goldie De Leon.
Are you feeling overwhelmed or struggling to cope with life’s challenges? You’re not alone. Mental health issues are more common than you might think, and seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness.
Our counseling service provides a safe, supportive environment where you can explore your feelings, identify negative thought patterns, and learn coping skills to manage your symptoms. Lauren is trained in evidence-based practices and specializes in a range of mental health concerns, including anxiety, depression, trauma, and addiction.
We understand that seeking counseling can be intimidating, but we believe that everyone deserves to live a fulfilling, happy life. Our approach is non-judgmental and compassionate, and we work collaboratively with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that meets your unique needs and goals.
We offer a free 15-minute consultation to see if our service is a good fit for you. Reach out at https://peacefulmindsolutions.com or call (703) 994-0300 to set up a consultation.
WHS Spring Festival
Join us at the WHS Spring Festival on April 22, 2023, from 10am- 3pm at Wakefield High School(main parking lot). Come out to shop, play, and eat!
Shop local vendors, arts & crafts, new and used items, food vendors/trucks, and
District 27 Toastmasters 2023 Virtual Conference
District 27 Toastmasters invites you to its annual conference where you can hear phenomenal speakers, attend professional development and personal growth seminars about leadership, negotiation, communication, teamwork, and mentorship. Learn how to develop your personal story and how to improve