Health

Orange County has declared a state of emergency due to the rapidly spreading virus infections

Orange County has declared a state of emergency due to the rapidly spreading virus infections

Orange County officials have declared a health emergency due to the rapid spread of viral infections that have caused a record number of pediatric hospitalizations and daily emergency room visits.

“Respiratory diseases are usually seen more often in December, January and February,” said Dr. Eric Ball, a physician at Children’s Hospital of Orange County. “We’re seeing a huge increase right now. The emergency room is seeing more children on a daily basis than ever before, not just this time of year, but every time of the year.”

The proclamation allows the county to use state and federal resources to address the situation and receive mutual aid from other counties.

The world has been hit by a perfect storm of COVID-19, the flu and the respiratory syncytial virus, which is especially dangerous for young children.

“Although there is no vaccine against RSV, we want OC residents to know that there are many ways to protect children and at-risk individuals,” said Dr. Regina Chinsio-Kwong, Chief Medical Officer of the OC Health Care Agency.

Chinsio-Kwong also urged residents to keep up with their vaccinations to reduce pressure on hospitals in the area.

“Our best way to protect ourselves and our children from respiratory illness is still the same things we practiced during the pandemic, including wearing masks when indoors around others and staying home when you’re sick,” she said.



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