San Luis Obispo County is experiencing an increase in pediatric illnesses and hospitalizations due to respiratory viruses, particularly respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).
This is according to the County of San Luis Obispo Health Agency for the Public Health Department.
Health officials urge community members, particularly older adults and parents of young children, to take precautions as RSV and other respiratory viruses begin to circulate at higher levels locally.
“While RSV circulates every year, we are seeing an impact that is earlier and more severe than usual and our hospitals are beginning to feel the strain,” said Dr. Penny Borenstein, County Health Officer in a press release.
RSV is a common virus that often causes fever and cold-like symptoms, with most people recovering on their own in a week or two. However, RSV can cause serious illness, especially for infants, children under age five, and adults age 65 and older.
In addition to RSV, SLO County is seeing higher levels of influenza than usual for this time of year and continues to see serious cases of COVID-19.
To help protect yourself and the community from RSV and other respiratory viruses, the County of San Luis Obispo Health Agency for the Public Health Department offers these tips:
• Wash your hands thoroughly and often. Avoid touching your face.
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, light switches, and
• Wear a mask (N95 or KN95) for added protection in crowds, especially indoors. If you have
any symptoms and need to be around others, wear a mask to avoid spreading the virus.
• Stay home from work, school, or childcare if you are sick, even if you test negative for
• Stay up to date on flu and COVID-19 vaccines to prevent complications of co-infection.
For more information on RSV, visit www.cdc.gov/rsv.
Public health phone support is available at (805) 781-5500 Monday - Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.