Riverside County COVID-19 Cases & Flu Hospitalizations Increase

Carmela Karcher

COVID-19, RSV and the flu.

A winter flurry of illness, crowding local hospitals with patients.

“It’s a triple whammy,” Riverside County Public Health’s Senior Public Information Specialist, Jose Arballo, shared. “They’re reporting risk activity, particularly in their ERs. The pediatric units are almost full. In some cases, they’ve activated their search plants, just like they did during COVID.”

But, it’s not just patients seeking care.

“It’s the staff themselves,” Arballo continued. “You have either staff calling in sick or you have staff having to take care of family members who are sick. It’s actually a two pronged problem.”

And this flu season isn’t like ones in years past.

“The flu season is normally from October through April or May,” he explained. “That’s normal of RSV, which has been here before in past years, but it hasn’t gotten to this point this quickly.”

With the holidays quickly approaching, infections will most likely increase.

“You’re gonna get people coming together in tight quarters, probably not doing social distancing, so that’s why it’s traditionally the time when our COVID cases go up,” Arballo said. “In some cases, they kind of dramatically spread. The flu, same thing.”

Knowing this, it makes vaccinations and other precautionary steps that much more essential.

All to protect you and your loved ones this holiday season.

“For vaccines, just like the flu vaccine and for the COVID vaccine, it takes about two weeks for the full effect of the vaccine to take effect.,” Arballo explained. “The first week of December, we think it’s a great time to get vaccinated for both the flu and for COVID. If you’re sick at all, please decide to wait and wash your hands frequently or wear a mask.”

Especially for our vulnerable population.

“Small children, infants and toddlers, babies, they’re particularly susceptible to RSV and the flu because their immune system hasn’t been fully developed yet,” Arballo said. “Get the shots. You might have a day or two of being uncomfortable, but it provides protection if you decide you want to get together for the holidays with friends and family.”

Arballo continued to say that according to initial reports from the CDC, this year’s flu vaccine is a good match.

Regardless, Arballo says they are continuing to strongly recommend people wear masks whenever they are indoors, especially for the holidays.

Suscribe Form Desktop


Submit your suggestions and questions

Nbc Palm Spring Logo

Download our App

Apple Store Logo

Play Store Logo