The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a health advisory warning of a spike of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) cases throughout the south, including Florida.
According to the CDC, RSV is the "most common cause of bronchiolitis and pneumonia in children under one year of age in the United States. Infants, young children and older adults with chronic medical conditions are at risk of severe disease from RSV infection."
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In their health advisory, the CDC "encourages broader testing for RSV among patients presenting with acute respiratory illness who test negative for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19."
The CDC also reminds healthcare personnel, childcare providers and staff of long-term care facilities to avoid going to work if they feel ill — even if they test negative for SARS-CoV-2 — due to the increased activity of RSV.
Per the Florida Department of Health, Florida’s RSV season is longer than the rest of the nation. And while the CDC is warning everyone in the South, a map on DOH's website shows that the only regional area where RSV is currently in season is in the Southeastern part of Florida.
Between May 23 and June 5, 2021, seven new RSV-associated outbreaks were reported in facilities serving children, per the DOH's latest full report.
As of the time of publication, the DOH stated that RSV levels were above those seen at this time in past years.
To learn more about RSV in Florida, please visit FloridaHealth.gov/RSV.