Respiratory Illnesses

Respiratory Illnesses
RSV is a major cause of respiratory illness in all age groups. Among infants and young children, it is the most common cause of bronchitis, croup, ear infections, and pneumonia. Both older adults as well as infants and young children are most likely to get serious complications if they get sick with RSV. A vaccine can prevent RSV for adults. A monoclonal antibody (an injection) is used to prevent RSV in young children. The best way to prevent RSV is to get the vaccine.
Respiratory Syncytial Virus 

The flu is an illness caused by the influenza viruses. Flu gets passed around every year, with some years being worse than others. While people may think about flu in the colder months, it can also spread in the summer. Influenza or the severity of the influenza is preventable by vaccine.  The best way to protect yourself and those you love from getting sick from the flu is to get a yearly flu vaccine. If you do become sick with the flu, there are steps you can take to make sure you don't spread your illness to others
If possible, stay home when you are sick, and only go out for medical care or for other necessities. CDC recommends staying home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone without using fever-reducing medicine.
Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds, or with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
Visit Wisconsin Department of Health Services' Influenza Landing Page for more information.

COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that can cause severe illness. COVID-19 spreads easily from person to person when someone who is sick breathes out droplets and very small particles with the virus. These droplets and particles can be breathed in by other people or land on their eyes, noses, or mouth and make them sick.
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) recommends the following prevention strategies to prevent COVID-19 infection.
Stay up to date on COVID-19 vaccines.

Get tested for COVID-19 if you have symptoms or were exposed to someone with COVID-19

Stay home: When people get sick with any respiratory virus, the updated guidance recommends that they stay home and away from others. For people with COVID-19, treatment is available and can lessen symptoms and lower the risk of severe illness. Return to normal activities when, for at least 24 hours, symptoms are improving overall, and if a fever was present, it has been gone without use of a fever-reducing medication. Once people resume normal activities, they are encouraged to take additional prevention strategies for the next 5 days to curb disease spread, such as taking more steps for cleaner air, enhancing hygiene practices, wearing a well-fitting mask, keeping a distance from others, and/or getting tested for respiratory viruses. Enhanced precautions are especially important to protect those most at risk for severe illness, including those over 65 and people with weakened immune systems. 

Seek treatment if you have COVID-19 and are at risk of getting very sick.

For the CDC press release  on 3/1/2024 click here:
CDC updates and simplifies respiratory virus recommendations.

Additional Covid- 19 Information Resources 
WI DHS's COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease) web resources.   
Healthy MKE is also a great resource for trending topics and concerns such as COVID-19 and influenza.  They provide access to information, tools, data, healthcare coverage assistance and more.

Milwaukee County Covid-19 Surveillance Dashboard