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Preventing Spread of Respiratory Viruses

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As the weather cools down and more people head indoors, the risk for certain respiratory viruses like influenza, RSV and COVID is expected to increase. Image for illustration purposes
As the weather cools down and more people head indoors, the risk for certain respiratory viruses like influenza, RSV and COVID is expected to increase. Image for illustration purposes

Mega Doctor News

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CLEVELAND CLINIC – As the weather cools down and more people head indoors, the risk for certain respiratory viruses like influenza, RSV and COVID is expected to increase.

“When those viruses start to act together, as we were concerned about the ‘tripledemic’ last year, our hospitals can fill up with a lot of sick people and that can overwhelm the system,” explained Kristin Englund, MD, infectious disease specialist for Cleveland Clinic. “So, we want to make sure that we are protecting ourselves not only from getting sick but also getting hospitalized from each and every one of those viruses.”

Dr. Englund said everyone should be practicing the same kind of safety measures that we did during the pandemic. 

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For example, regularly washing your hands, sanitizing high touch areas, and staying home when sick. 

She also recommends getting vaccinated for each of the viruses, if you’re eligible. 

Right now, the RSV vaccine is available for pregnant women to help protect their newborns, babies younger than eight months old, as well as adults over 60. 

The flu vaccine and COVID vaccine are also available.  

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The new COVID vaccine was designed specifically for the current variant circulating.

“Unfortunately, COVID continues to mutate, so the prior vaccines that we’ve had are no longer effective against COVID. This new vaccine is really important in addressing the most recent variant,” said Dr. Englund.

Both Moderna and Pfizer offer new versions of the COVID vaccine. 

Dr. Englund said you can mix-and-match – meaning if you previously had a Moderna vaccine, it’s okay to get Pfizer this time around. 

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