Monday , March 20 2023

Cases continue to rise in Sweden


Several children’s hospitals in the country have a lot of staff with infants infected with the RS virus.

Now the doctor warns that more babies are at risk.

– I guess we have the expected peak in two weeks, says Malin Reed Rinder, chief physician at the Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital.

Hospitals have a record number of RS virus cases this fall. Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital in Stockholm has expanded its places and brought additional staff to accompany all small patients.

– It was crowded and we opened more places for care so that we could receive all patients. We have more doctors on site, and some elderly patients have been transferred to other wards, says Malin Reed Rinder, chief physician at Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital.

Currently, between 45 and 50 children are being cared for at the hospital due to RS infections, but Malin Reed Rinder believes the cases will increase.

– The infection curve continues straight up. I guess we have the expected peak in two weeks, she says.

Almost the whole country is affected

The Swedish Public Health Agency tells DN that they have never seen such an early season in RS before. The fact that the virus has spread in record time this year could be a corona effect. Last year, the season in RS was almost absent, which may explain why the virus is now spreading faster.

A record number of babies have been affected by the RS virus this fall.

Alarms about overcrowded children’s hospitals are now sounding from almost the entire country, which the Public Health Agency also writes about on its website.

– In Gothenburg, Stockholm, Uppsala and Orebro, the cases have increased sharply. Scanne has also begun to warn that the number of RS cases is increasing among very young children, says Malin Reed Rinder.

Vasternorrland, Vasterbotten and Norrbotten also report an increase in the RS virus.

– First of all, the youngest ones come to the hospitals, those who are less than 4-5 months old, says Malin Reed Rinder.

In addition to infants, some younger children with basic diseases are also taken care of. Due to the high pressure, many planned operations had to be canceled at the Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital.

– We have reduced the planned care. Now we only perform emergency operations, says Malin Reed Rinder.

Physician warnings: Unsustainable situation

Almost all children become infected with the RS virus during the first two years of life. Most children cope well with the infection, but for the youngest children, the virus can hit hard.

Earlier this week, the Sahlgrenska Hospital in Gothenburg announced that the ambulance for children was completely filled. On Monday, 231 children came to the emergency room, almost twice as much as the average at this time of year.

Even in Orebro, there are twice as many candidates for children’s ambulance than usual. He is now fully occupied in the children’s department, writes NA.

– On Wednesday, we had up to three times more patients than we usually have in October. It is an unsustainable situation, says pediatrician Jonas Ludvigsson for the newspaper.

Jonas Ludvigsson.

Jonas Ludvigsson, who worked as a pediatrician for 23 years, says he has never been to a similar season in RS. Aftonbladet writes that this is a tense situation in almost all pediatric clinics in Sweden.

Avoid meeting people with symptoms

Chief physician Malin Reed Rinder says that one should think about being careful not to infect the youngest.

– It should be remembered that you do not meet people who have a cold or have recently had a cold. If you have older siblings who go to preschool, you can keep them at home for one or two weeks, if you have a baby at home, she says.

Care should also be taken with hand hygiene, for example.

– The protective factors are not to smoke, to breastfeed, to have good hand hygiene and to try to keep your distance from people who have symptoms, says Malin Reed Rinder.

Given that several children’s hospitals in the country are almost completely filled, a long wait for pediatric emergency services in the country should be expected.

– Since the emergency rooms are very congested, unfortunately, it can be expected to wait a long time. If it is not an emergency, you can call 1177 when asking for help, Malin Rid Rinder.


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