California sees increase in RSV, a respiratory illness that can be dangerous for babies and young children
San Francisco, CA — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported one of the most severe outbreaks of RSV — more commonly known as the common cold — ever detected in the continental U.S. to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration this week.
The virus has been identified in the central and eastern counties of California, including Sacramento and Merced, as well as several other California cities, including Berkeley and Los Angeles.
In addition to the large number of cases in California, the CDC estimates that at least 3,800 cases were reported in the U.S. as of October 9, 2019. It is the largest outbreak of RSV ever.
As of October 9, the state health department received 28 RSV cases – 27 from California and 1 from the U.S. mainland – with an additional two cases from Hawaii.
“The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has been receiving reports from health care providers in local communities throughout the state of RSV, a respiratory illness that is most often diagnosed in small children,” said Dr. Rosemarie Orf.
On Friday, Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an Executive Order announcing the state’s response to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), a serious respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus that is spreading rapidly through the world as confirmed by many countries.
Newsom’s order says that the state is increasing its efforts to identify, test, and track individuals with the virus.
“As of this writing, there are almost 5,000 Californians confirmed to have the virus,” Newsom said. “More than 80 Californians have died as a result of the virus. With every death, we lose a Californian to the infection that has no known antidote, no vaccines and no known treatment.”
“I have directed all state health agencies to prioritize actions at the front lines of the spread of the virus,�