As the festive season of gatherings and travel draws near, with Thanksgiving kicking off on November 23, the UCHealth system reports an increase in hospitalizations owing to respiratory illnesses. This situation has led to a proactive response from the hospital system, urging individuals to receive their flu shots along with other necessary vaccines sooner rather than later. Due to their delayed health benefits, immediate vaccination is paramount as this helps bolster immunity efficiently in time for the holiday season, thereby curbing the spread and impact of these illnesses.
According to recent data, UCHealth recorded 28 patients having confirmed COVID-19 infections in their Northern Colorado hospitals, raising the statewide number of patients to 75. This season is identified as the ‘respiratory virus season’ which comes with the risk of a multitude of illnesses ranging from the common cold to more severe conditions. Dr. Michelle Barron, the Senior Medical Director of Infection Prevention and Control for UCHealth, reiterated this in a news release.
Dr. Barron emphasized that the flu shot, along with other vaccines, take approximately two weeks to reach its full potency after vaccination. Moreover, certain vulnerable populations, such as individuals aged 60 and above, as well as persons between the 32nd and 36th week of pregnancy, are advised to get vaccines as a preventable measure against RSV.
Furthermore, Dr. Barron encouraged individuals who aren’t feeling well to stay home. Quoting her words, she advised applying common sense by avoiding the spread of any illnesses to preferentially susceptible individuals like aged grandparents. She encouraged cautious enjoyment of the holiday season so as not to negatively affect others.
In an effort to safeguard its patients, staff, and visitors, UCHealth has applied its seasonal visitor restrictions across all its hospitals and clinics.