Health officials say the flu and COVID-19 could be making a comeback in the U.S, creating what’s called a twindemic.
It’s already been seen in the Southern Hemisphere, which is an indication of what we can expect in the fall and winter months.
Doctors say for the last two years flu cases decreased because of COVID precautions. But now that the world has come out of the pandemic people are observing those precautions less, giving both COVID and influenza the perfect opportunity to spread.
But can you get both at the same time? Dr. Jeffrey Jahre with St. Luke’s University Health Network says yes.
“We have seen that in the past and since they can both affect people in terms of their respiratory system it is a pile on of two very bad events,” Jahre said.
Jahre says right now, St. Luke’s hospitalization rates for COVID range from 30 to 50 patients network wide, with most of them being unvaccinated.
Jahre says young children, the elderly, and people with compromised immune systems are at greatest risk and should get vaccinated for both viruses, as the flu can be deadly in some cases.
“It’s avoidable and prevention is always better than cure. That applies to COVID and it applies to influenza,” Jahre said.
Jahre says the best defense beyond a vaccine for COVID and the flu is to wash your hands, eat right, and get good sleep.
And if you are sick, stay home.