Medical clinics see rise in patients with respiratory illnesses

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – During the holidays, most people spend time at large indoor gatherings. And all that togetherness can lead to some unwanted sharing of germs and viruses.

Amy Bogue is the president of the Dutch Medical Clinic. She said she has seen an uptick in several viruses now that the holidays have passed.

“Especially over the holidays, we definitely saw a rise in COVID in the past month, which is not uncommon with large family gatherings. In the past week, it has flopped over to flu, more flu positives than COVID-19, and it has been RSV with kids. This is the season, it is here, and those numbers have been steady for a couple of months,” said Bogue.

Bogue said she has seen people have multiple viruses at once.

“You can be diagnosed with COVID and flu together, they are both viruses, just different kinds. It is really about treating the symptoms. If you can catch the flu early, there are some great medicines to help decrease the symptoms of the flu. You want to try to catch that within the first 24 hours and the only way to do that is with that flu test. With COVID, most people can take a test at home or come to the pharmacy to know if they got that, but the earlier you can diagnose it, then you can treat it and hopefully not have as bad of symptoms,” said Bogue.

Bogue had some advice for reducing your risk of getting sick

“Washing your hands is always going to be the big one, Every time I pump gas, I am religious about washing my hands, when I go to the grocery store, the first thing I do when I get back in the car is wash my hands. That would probably be the number one thing. The number two thing is taking your vitamins. People underestimate taking vitamins and how they help build up your immune system, you need to be exposed to some things because you cannot just live in a bubble, but it is how your body fights off. I think it is hydration too, so washing your hands, vitamins, and staying hydrated are the top three things to staying free from illness,” said Bogue.

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