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Avera Medical Minute: COVID, Influenza not letting up

Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 5:47 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - The ongoing battle against COVID-19 continues for healthcare providers. Dr. Jason Knutson with Avera Family Medicine says the situation remains steady from a clinical standpoint and through the hospital. Knutson, along with other health professionals, are hoping the numbers drop but that has not been the case. Nearly 60% of South Dakotans are vaccinated against COVID-19, but hundreds of people are still in the hospital, and Dr. Knutson says people are still dying every day.

“Herd immunity is not here yet,” Dr. Knutson said. “Getting the vaccine would be definitely helpful. Maybe getting kids in the 5-11 age group.”

Let’s not forget Influenza is not taking a back seat either.

Some doctors have expressed concern about a “Twin-demic” as we head into the typical flu season. Dr. Knutson is urging people to get their COVID-19 vaccine and Influenza vaccine because the hospital capacity cannot handle much more. There were fewer cases of the flu last year which doctors attribute to social distancing, good hygiene, and people wearing masks. While a minimal impact from the flu would be ideal, doctors know mask-wearing is not quite as prevalent now. Due to this, a more robust Influenza season could be upon us.

“We can do something about it, we just have to get people vaccinated,” Dr. Knutson added.

If you are looking for an opportunity to get immunized, you can find a location to do so here.

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