Flu and RSV Resources for Providers
A message from Dr. John Kinnison, President, Valley Children's Specialty Medical Group
For weeks, national news outlets have reported the onslaught of respiratory illnesses driving children hospitals' censuses to capacity. While the seasonal flux of RSV is well established, the seasonal outbreak this year is proving to be earlier, larger and more severe than years prior. Complicating the timing of this surge, is the increased circulation of parainfluenza, influenza, enterovirus D68, human metapneumovirus and the continued burden of SARS-CoV-2 which has created the next big storm. Now more than ever, the pediatric community as a whole must rally together to support our most vulnerable patients. Valley Children's is currently experiencing an unprecedented volume of patients with respiratory illnesses. These patients have pushed our hospital to capacity and where your teams can support these patients in the community, will assist us in managing the kids who need us the most.
With these respiratory viruses, the highest risk populations include both young children, especially infant less than one year of age, and those with weakened immune systems. Symptoms are similar for all respiratory viruses, including fever, cough, runny nose and/or nasal congestion. The mainstay of treatment remains oral intake of fluids, antipyretics when febrile and diligent nasal suctioning with saline drops. Where your team has capacity, we urge patients to be evaluated on an outpatient basis to minimize unnecessary emergency room visits. If there are concerns for dehydration, worsening respiratory distress or hypoxia, contact with your local emergency room is appropriate.
We are one Valley and our kids remain our top priority. We thank you all for the care and compassion you deliver to your families and know we will weather this storm together.
Guidelines for Providers
Helping Each Other, Our Valley and Our Kids
As always, we continue to be a resource for you, our physician partners. Valley Children's has a one-call solution dedicated to you and your staff. To contact our Provider Assistance Line, call 559-353-8800. If you need to speak immediately with a Valley Children's specialist, call our 24/7 Access Center at 866-353-KIDS (5437).