Louisville doctors seeing COVID hospitalizations rise ahead of holidays
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - As the holidays approach, UofL Health said COVID hospitalizations are back on the rise.
The health system said they have 57 patients. Some of those patients are in the ICU, and a few are on ventilators.
The CDC said less than 10% of the country has gotten the latest dose of the vaccine. Jefferson County is still in the low-risk green zone.
Dr. Jason Smith, with UofL Health, said the current case count could be higher than it appears. Most people are testing at home.
”I think the new strain tends to be little bit more unpredictable,” Smith said. “In that folks you would think would probably be OK would wind up in the hospital. And some folks you thought would normally need more supportive care sometimes can make it through the disease.”
Smith said we are still well below 240 hospitalizations at the peak of omicron. Still, there’s a lot health experts do not understand.
”So my worry is, I start to see a doubling in the number of hospitalizations in the course of the hospitalizations in a seven to 10 day period,” Smith said. “That’s what we saw right before we went into a huge peak previously.”
Smith said the best advice he has for families coming together for the holidays is to get your vaccines and stay away if you feel sick.
“If you get a vaccine, and you stay away from people when you are sick, or you wear a mask when you think you are coming down with something and you are sick, that is the best way to protect you, your family and everything that we hold dear,” Smith said.
Smith said they’ve also seen a rise in flu cases as well, and COVID and flu symptoms are similar, including sore throats, aches and pains.
He said best way to prevent both is to get your flu shot and bivalent booster at the same time.
The new bivalent vaccine booster is much better at protecting about the new strains of COVID, Smith said, and if you get your vaccine now, it should protect you until February.
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