SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) — The holidays are fast approaching, and that means gatherings with family and friends.
Unfortunately, the number of COVID cases is increasing. A Sanford doctor says he’s seen a more than 20% increase in cases over the past week.
KELOLAND doctors say this winter we can expect to see COVID, flu and RSV all circulating at the same time. The severity of these illnesses could depend on vaccinations.
CDC Director Dr. Mandy Cohen received her COVID vaccine last month…and acknowledged that COVID vaccine uptake in the United States is a little slow.
“I know people want to leave COVID in the rearview mirror, but unfortunately it is still here and continues to make people very sick and even die,” Dr. Cohen said.
Dr. Jeremy Cauwels agrees. As Sanford’s chief medical officer, he says getting vaccinated remains the best defense for yourself and those you love.
“I’m very happy to say that COVID is not as bad as it was in years past, but certainly no one wants to be sick during the holidays, and so I think if there’s anything that you can do, either by giving yourself a vaccine, especially if you are in a high-risk category or by calling your doctor and getting treatment, those two things can really help you get through the holidays safely,” said Dr. Cauwels.
Cauwels says even though this year’s flu hits hard, COVID kind of surprises you.
“It’s one of those things where for the first few days you might not think it’s that serious, but it’s absolutely worth getting tested because we can treat you with something before the situation does not get worse,” said Dr. Cauwels.
According to the CDC, we can all take precautions for Thanksgiving gatherings: If you are sick, stay home, wear a mask, and increase ventilation in your home or work space.
I hope you don’t have to do any of these things and can enjoy a happy and healthy Thanksgiving.
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