HUNTINGTON, WV (WOWK)—Hoops Family Children’s Hospital (HFCH) in Huntington says they’re experiencing an unusually high volume of pediatric RSV cases.

HFCH said in a press release that the surge in RSV cases along with an expected rise in COVID-19 and flu cases will cause a strain on overall resources.

“We are experiencing an unusually high volume of RSV cases in pediatrics,” said Dr. Eduardo Pino, medical director of HFCH. “This RSV surge occurring right now is earlier than usual and is undoubtedly causing a strain on medical personnel and overall resources, especially since it is impacting hospitals all across the U.S.”

HFCH recommended the following precautions to help prevent RSV:

  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or upper shirt sleeve, not hands
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 minutes
  • Avoid close contact with others, such as kissing, shaking hands, and sharing cups or eating utensils
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs and mobile devices
  • Limit the time children spend in potentially contagious settings

“Babies under two months of age are at the highest risk for severe disease,” said Kate Waldeck, M.D., FAAP, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) intensivist at HFCH and assistant professor of pediatrics at the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine. “For families with young children, we recommend cocooning them, which means limiting their exposure to adults and children outside of the household. Good hand washing is also essential. RSV is one of those viruses that live on surfaces like your child’s favorite toy, making it more contagious.”

Parents are urged to contact their child’s pediatrician if their child demonstrates cold-like symptoms.