“Tripledemic” in CNY: How Three Diseases Affect Local Area Tripledemic in Syracuse: How Respiratory Diseases Affect CNY

Camillus, N.Y. (NCC News) – “The reason for concern at this point is because we’re getting hit from all sides.”

Those are the words of Onondaga County health department medical director Dr. James Alexander, referring to what experts are calling the “tripledemic”.

What is the tripledemic, you may ask? Well, it is the combination of 3 respiratory illness seasons at once: Influenza (flu), SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19), and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).

This coincidence has affected doctor’s offices throughout Central New York and the rest of the country as well. At Summerwood Pediatrics in Camillus, it’s been much of the same.

The staff at Summerwood’s main task right now is trying to keep kids out of hospitals, according to the practice’s medical director Dr. Robert Dracker.

“We do have children who are very ill and because we are trying to avoid sending them to the emergency room, which bottlenecks the emergency room… we sometimes double up or triple up and see patients when we need to, especially the very young,” Dracker said.

Surprisingly so, Dracker also explained how Covid is the least worrisome out of the three for children.

“Fortunately, and I would say over the past year that children have not been that severely affected with Covid, but they still do get infected, and they can still transmit Covid to other family members who are very vulnerable,” he said

With everything that has been going around, it’s apparent that one thing will continue to protect us, and that are masks, according to Dr. Alexander.

“It is as critically important today as it has been throughout the pandemic, uh, you know, you go to social events now and it’s, uh, shocking how few people are masked,” he said. 

Masks continue to be the best way to prevent against the spread of these respiratory diseases.


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