CHICAGO — With COVID-19 hospitalization again on the rise in Illinois, state public well being officers are asking residents to double down on defending themselves towards seasonal sickness.
Twenty Illinois counties are actually at a medium degree for hospitalization associated to COVID-19, with a 17% improve in hospital COVID-19 instances since final week. Flu and RSV infections are additionally rising in hospitals, based on a information launch from the Illinois Division of Public Well being.
Throughout Thanksgiving, staying wholesome means washing arms usually throughout the vacation, conserving rooms ventilated and asking visitors to cowl coughs, IDPH Director Dr. Sameer Vohra stated within the launch.
“I wish to encourage our residents to make use of the entire instruments at their disposal to guard themselves and their family members this Thanksgiving vacation weekend,” Vohra stated.
IDPH additionally asks residents to skip vacation gatherings if they’ve signs of respiratory infections, Vohra stated. Residents can join on-line for 4 free COVID-19 checks, masks and different free private protecting tools.
The division can also be calling on well being care facilities to implement masking insurance policies this vacation season.
Omicron strains of COVID-19 are at present the commonest, based on Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention information. The CDC additionally studies a nationwide rise in RSV, with low vaccine charges however excessive hospitalization charges amongst kids and older adults.
The CDC operates a free COVID-19 vaccine program for folks with out insurance coverage. Kids and youths beneath 19 can obtain different free vaccines if they’re uninsured, or if they’re Indigenous or Native Alaskan.
Nevertheless, with present shortages of RSV vaccines for youngsters, pregnant folks ought to search a vaccine between 32 and 36 weeks to go alongside antibodies, based on IDPH.