Saturday, January 28, 2023

New York officials offer holiday health guidance, update for Tripledemic

NEW YORK – With the increase in cases of COVID-19, Influenza and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), New York City Mayor Eric Adams and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) Commissioner New York City, Dr. Ashwin Vasan, on Monday reminded New Yorkers to stay safe this holiday season by staying up to date on vaccinations, wearing a mask in enclosed public places when possible, getting tested regularly, and staying home when sick.

The city also announced that flu and RSV tests, as well as Tamiflu prescriptions, are available at 50 NYC Health + Hospitals Test to Treat units.

Finally, starting this week, Pfizer’s updated COVID-19 vaccine will be available at 11 public hospitals in the city for children aged six months to four years. Data shows that flu cases in New York City this year are already higher than during the peak of the past four flu seasons.

In addition, over the past month, the seven-day average of confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases, like RSV cases, has increased, according to city officials.

“When COVID-19 hit New York City nearly three years ago, New Yorkers cared for each other and followed the advice of our health experts,” said Mayor Adams. “With the holiday season in full swing and cases of COVID-19, flu and RSV on the rise, we once again ask New Yorkers to protect themselves and their loved ones. Wear a mask, get tested, get treated if you’re eligible, and if you haven’t received your flu shot or your COVID-19 booster, we encourage you to roll up your sleeves. We’re ramping up our efforts to put the tools to stay safe in the hands of as many New Yorkers as possible, and together we’ll have a happy and healthy holiday season.”

New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan recently issued a health advisory urging New York City residents to wear high-quality masks indoors and outdoors when in crowded places.

This is especially important for people who are at, or are at, an increased risk of complications from COVID-19, RSV, or influenza, such as those 65 and older and those with reduced immunity.

“We want everyone to have a happy and healthy holiday,” Dr. Vasan said. “As we ask New Yorkers to wear a mask, stay home when sick, get tested and get treatment, the city stands ready to help us get through this winter. The Department of Health will be closely monitoring transmission, variants and health system capacity, and is making resources readily available so you know where to turn to protect yourself and others.”

In addition to wearing masks and getting vaccinated, officials urged New Yorkers to take other precautions, including getting tested before gatherings and developing symptoms of the disease.

As a way to make some resources available to all counties, city officials are providing:

  • Rapid home antigen tests for COVID-19 are available at more than 250 walk-in drop-off locations in each borough, including city libraries, park facilities and cultural institutions. New Yorkers can visit to find the most convenient home testing location for them. At-home testing is available for public school students and staff who have symptoms and is also distributed before winter break.
  • COVID-19 testing with immediate access to the antiviral drug Paxlovid for eligible patients in 75 mobile test-to-treat units. Fifty mobile Test to Treat units now offer flu and RSV testing for symptomatic patients and Tamiflu prescriptions for those who are eligible. New Yorkers can submit proof of a positive test, including at-home test results and test results from any third-party testing provider, to be tested immediately at all mobile test-to-treat units and PaxLovid may be associated with. New Yorkers can visit to find the mobile test-to-treat unit that is most convenient for them; why
  • New Yorkers can call their doctor or call 212-COVID19 to ask about treatment for COVID-19. Calling 212-COVID19 provides an immediate connection to a doctor who can refer patients for monoclonal antibody treatment or prescribe antiviral drugs, such as paxlovid, and arrange for free same-day home delivery.

Influenza and RSV patients can also visit NYC Health + Hospitals ExpressCare or call 631-EXP-CARE to speak with a provider who can provide high-quality urgent care and prescribe medications at the pharmacy of their choice Could

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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