New types of Covid are emerging. What are the symptoms?


Southwest Florida Hospitals Surging in Covid Numbers

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What causes the run-down feeling of muscle pain and congestion?

Even if you want to rule out Covid-19, don’t.

The The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 39 states have reported cases of COVIDIncluding Florida.

Test positive rates nationally increased to nearly 7% from 5% the previous week. According to the CDC, hospital emergency room visits for COVID infections are on the rise nationwide.

Data collected by State Health Department And what medical professionals are seeing is an increase in infections.

While not alarming at the moment, experts say that could change as the summer progresses.

Both Lee Health And NCHTwo hospital systems in Southwest Florida are seeing the most cases.

What are Lee and Collier County Hospitals saying?

“Like many healthcare delivery systems across the country, Lee Health System facilities have seen a small but significant improvement in the number of Covid-positive patients seeking care,” said Dr. Ian Konzenhauser, chief medical officer of Lee County General Hospital, in an email. .

At NCH, a private nonprofit in Collier County, there has been a slight increase this spring, and that may continue into the summer, says Christopher Raphael, executive director of critical care.

Covid infections represented 36% of all laboratory confirmations at NCH in May, up from 28% in April, he said.

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What do the Florida Covid numbers show?

The state health department reinstated its weekly reporting of cases earlier this year.

Statewide infections were 8,927 cases in the week of June 14, up from 6,568 cases in the same week in 2023.

In Lee County, there were 392 cases, while Collier had 210 cases. Those numbers are more than double what they were a year ago; Lee had 259 cases in the week ending June 16, 2023. Collier was 92.

Florida has had 195,793 cases so far this year. Statistics for the year up to June last year were not available. Last year the total number of cases across the state was 583,014.

What about new covid types and vaccines?

New variants of the virus continue to emerge, and the CDC reports that the KP.3 strain accounts for 33% of infections nationwide, followed by the KP.2 strain at nearly 21%. Another strain, LB. 1, accounts for nearly 18% of infections.

Lee Health’s Konzenhauser said the reasons for the increase in cases in Florida could be linked to several factors.

“Covid has historically demonstrated a summer spike, due to increased travel and people spending more time indoors to escape the heat,” he said.

“Furthermore, vaccine booster rates have decreased significantly and KP.2, KP.3 and LB.1 have proven to spread more easily than their predecessors,” he added.

Raphael, NCH’s executive director of critical care, acknowledged that travel in the spring and summer, when people are likely to spend more time with others, helps explain why infections are on the rise.

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What is the latest vaccine update?

While Americans may be keeping up with the Covid vaccine boosters, the numbers suggest otherwise.

As of mid-May, the CDC reported that 23% of adults nationwide had received a vaccine update since September. Nearly 42% of adults over age 75 have frequent episodes.

About 14% of children aged six months to 17 years are up-to-date on their Covid vaccinations.

On a positive note, Konzenhauser said the three latest variants have not been shown to cause a more serious infection.

Symptoms may include fever or chills; Cough, sore throat, congestion, headache, muscle pain, fatigue and difficulty breathing. Some may experience loss of taste or smell, brain “fog” and upset stomach.

How do I make sure I’m up to date on vaccinations?

On June 27, the CDC released an update on vaccines for this fall and winter.

Recommends everyone 6 months and older get a booster shot, whether or not they’ve been vaccinated before.

The CDC points out that the virus that causes COVID-19 is always changing and that protection from vaccines wanes over time.

“Obtaining the updated 2024-2025 Covid-19 vaccine can restore and improve protection against the strains of the virus currently causing most infections and hospitalizations in the United States,” the CDC said.

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