After straining for months beneath the load of this pandemic, we’re lastly seeing constructive positive factors and our economic system is getting stronger. Whereas Georgia noticed a slight enhance in unemployment claims final week, that adopted seven straight weeks of decline in unemployment profit claims filed right here.
We clearly can’t let our guard down.
That’s why the Metro Atlanta Chamber, the Georgia Hospital Affiliation, and Central Atlanta Progress launched Get Georgia Effectively, an effort to generate assist within the personal sector to boost public consciousness of behavioral change that may sluggish the unfold of COVID-19. We need to cease the unfold of the virus, each for the well being of our neighborhood and for our economic system.
Through the peak of the pandemic in July, some Georgia hospitals had been overwhelmed with sufferers. As reported by GPB, Navicent Well being in Macon had stretchers lined up towards partitions within the ER. Employees reached out to ICUs in different counties and states to deal with their inflow of sufferers, transport sufferers all the way in which to Orlando, FL, as a way to discover open beds.
Will our hospitals be capable of deal with a spike in each flu and COVID-19 circumstances? Through the 2019/2020 flu season, 2,519 folks had been hospitalized with the flu in metro Atlanta alone.
It’s not simply hospitals. Many people contaminated with the flu keep dwelling and heal with over-the-counter medication and relaxation. However due to the similarity in signs between flu and COVID-19, folks will justifiably be involved and will inundate their healthcare suppliers when contaminated with COVID-like signs.
As our economic system finds its footing, sustaining a wholesome workforce is crucial. Based on a examine printed within the medical journal “Vaccine,” People miss 111 million workdays yearly resulting from flu. The financial affect is $16.3 billion misplaced yearly.
Being contaminated with each viruses creates a bunch of issues. Coinfection can velocity the unfold of each viruses. Since 40 % of individuals contaminated with COVID-19 are asymptomatic, they might unknowingly unfold each viruses when coughing, sneezing and speaking whereas contaminated with the flu. And it’s not simply spreading the virus that could be a concern. Flu impacts the respiratory system. COVID-19 impacts the vascular system as properly, which might result in blood clots.
“Coinfection of influenza and COVID-19 can have an effect on a number of organ techniques on the identical time,” says Amber Schmidtke, who holds a Ph.D in medical microbiology and immunology and is a former knowledgeable for the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention. “It’s not a state of affairs you need to be in.”
The CDC recommends getting the flu vaccine yearly. Youngsters six months to eight years may have two doses, everybody else wants just one. It takes about two weeks to develop antibodies and get the total safety of the vaccine. Don’t wait till the tip of October when the flu season begins to gear up. Get the flu shot now.
Make a plan to assist workers get the flu shot. Think about internet hosting a free flu vaccine clinic on-site. If that’s not an choice, supply flexibility throughout working hours to get a flu shot locally. Ship out communications to workers encouraging flu pictures and the place they’re obtainable.
We will work collectively to maintain the flu virus from spreading but when we fail to take motion, we threat overwhelming our hospitals, coping with coinfections and doubtlessly inflicting extra circumstances of COVID-19.
Fortunately, we may be proactive towards influenza. Based on the CDC, the “flu vaccine prevents thousands and thousands of sicknesses and flu-related visits to the physician annually.”
All of us need to maintain our neighborhood wholesome and see our economic system keep on observe. If a easy flu shot may also help, take the time to get one at this time.
A.J. Robinson is president of Central Atlanta Progress.