European healthcare at risk of ‘severe’ pressure from respiratory viruses


The European health systems they risk suffering “severe” pressure in the weeks and months to come due to the circulation of the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), the seasonal flu and coronavirus, notified on Monday European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

This epidemic reference center of the European Union (EU) pointed out that since the end of October until now several countries have recorded an increase in pediatric hospitalizations for syncytial infections, while other respiratory pathogens circulate, leading to increased risk of pressure from the health system.

“The respiratory syncytial virus infections not unusual these days, but this year there are more and happened earlier as the pandemic approaches, affecting proportionally more children,” explains the ECDC.

To this must be added the seasonal flu season overview and a “possible” resurgence in coronavirus cases after weeks of decline.

Concern for the end of the year

“The New Year’s holiday is associated with activities such as social gatheringsshopping and travel, which pose significant additional risks for the transmission of respiratory viruses,” said ECDC Director Andrea Ammon.

Ammon urged strengthen health systems and support for health workers and stressed that vaccinating risk groups against influenza and covid-19 should be a “priority”.

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ECDC recommends promoting the activities of communication of risks to the population, including the promotion of vaccination; and increase the awareness of professionals to diagnose cases in time and strengthen preparations for a larger hypothetical hospital load.

It also defends the promotion of good hygiene practices and appropriate non-pharmaceutical interventions such as the use of masks, ventilation of enclosed spaces, and avoiding crowded public spaces are considered.

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