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Feds should help NY hospitals dealing with RSV case surge: Sen. Chuck Schumer


The US Department of Health and Human Services should be prepared to send doctors, nurses and medical staff to New York amid a surge in respiratory syntactical virus infections, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Sunday.

While the Big Apple reported a slight decline in RSV cases on Nov. 19, the rate of known infections has more than doubled since October, according to the most recently available data.

To combat the rise in cases in the city and on Long Island, Schumer called on HHS to help increase the number of medical personnel in New York — either by sending in government workers or by easing rules to allow more professionals from other states to come assist.

“I’m calling on the US Department of Health and Human Services to be at the ready to take immediate action for New York City and Long Island hospitals get the needed support to take this wave head on, and keep our kids safe,” Schumer said during a press conference in Manhattan.

“It’s a simple 10 letters,” the New York Democrat told reporters. “I’m telling HHS to address RSV ASAP!”

Chuck Schumer holds up a printout of an Instagram post by a mom whose baby had RSV
Pediatric admissions for RSV are up 49% compared to one year ago, according to Sen. Schumer.
DANIEL WILLIAM MCKNIGHT

Overall RSV admissions among children are up 49% this year compared to 2021, Schumer said.

At Columbia College Medical Center, hundreds of kids have been coming in each day with the bug, which causes mild, cold-like symptoms in older kids and healthy adults.

The virus can become severe for the youngest children, raising concerns this year as it spreads at unprecedented levels.

Data from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene shows a rapid increase in RSV cases in recent months, with a nearly 10-fold increase in known cases since mid-September.
Data from the city’s Health Department shows RSV has spiked in recent months.
Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

“I’ve been practicing for 40 years. We have never seen an RSV surge like we are having over these past few weeks,” said Dr. Charles Schleien, Chair of Pediatric Services at Northwell Health, who appeared alongside Schumer on Sunday.

“Our emergency departments have been almost overwhelmed,” Schleien said.



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