State health officials hold briefing on ‘tripledemic’

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — New Mexico is facing a triple threat of the flu, COVID-19, and Respiratory Syncytial Virus, or RSV.

“We are seeing a lot more influenza-like illness now than in previous seasons,” New Mexico Department of Health Deputy Secretary Dr. Laura Parajon said. “So these three illnesses are out there right now. Be careful, if you get sick, stay home.”

The latest flu map from the CDC shows New Mexico marked in red, indicating high flu activity.

State health officials also pointed out that flu cases are spiking much earlier than in previous years.

Hospitals are feeling the strain. Recently, UNMH leaders said their pediatric unit is operating at 125% capacity, mostly because of a surge in RSV cases.

“Historically, RSV has started in mid-December,” said Dr. Anna Duran with UNMH. “We are about six weeks before. It will peak around early January and really peter off at the end of March. So, you know, the big concern are the holidays coming up. We’re anticipating seeing more of a surge just because people, you know, want to see one another.”

State health officials are recommending everyone get their flu and COVID-19 vaccines.