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Yellowstone County experiencing an increase in respiratory diseases

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Yellowstone County, Montana – The flu, COVID-19, and RSV are three respiratory infections that are on the rise in Yellowstone County and are boosting hospitalizations, according to health officials there.

According to a RiverStone Health news release on Wednesday, 12 COVID-19 patients were admitted to the hospital in Billings on average each day last week. Additionally, according to RiverStone, a few kids have recently been hospitalized with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and one patient has been admitted to the hospital with the flu during the course of the past month.

Hospital emergency visits for respiratory sickness symptoms have increased during the last three weeks, according to health officials, albeit the rate is still lower than it was at the same time of year in 2020 and 2021.

The death toll in Yellowstone County since March 2020 has reached 591 according to RiverStone, which also confirmed four additional COVID-19-related deaths in October. The prior reports of two additional deaths in October brought the total for the month to six.

Those four most recent death reports included:

• A man in his 80s who died on Oct. 30 at a Billings hospital. He had been vaccinated.
• A woman in her 90s who died on Oct. 11 at a care facility. She had been vaccinated.
• A man in his 90s who died on Oct. 10 at home. He had been vaccinated.
• A woman in her 70s who died on Oct. 6 at home. She was not vaccinated.

The flu and COVID-19 vaccines provide the safest, most scientifically supported defense against serious disease and death. Children as young as six months old and adults over the age of consider receiving the flu vaccine with the COVID-19 virus vaccine. You can get both vaccine types at the same appointment with your doctor.

By appointment, children and adults can receive vaccinations at the RiverStone Health Immunization Clinic. The COVID-19 vaccine is still free, and RiverStone Health will work with people to make the flu shot cheap. Call 406.247.3382 if you can. Numerous additional neighborhood pharmacies and clinics also stock vaccines.

In addition to immunization, maintaining excellent cleanliness habits lowers your chance of contracting and transmitting respiratory infections. This entails frequently cleaning your hands thoroughly, covering your cough and sneeze, and remaining in when you’re sick. High-risk individuals for serious respiratory illnesses may want to take extra precautions, like avoiding crowds and donning a facemask in public.

Visit covid.riverstonehealth.org for further details.

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