Dec 20, 2023
By Jane Brown
If you think everyone seems sick these days, you’re not wrong.
Acute Care Enhanced Surveillance is an Ontario wide system that monitors hospital registration records in real time.
And its tracking reveals a viral soup, including COVID, the flu, and RSV among other viruses, has led to a steady increase in emergency department visits across the province since September.
That trend is mirrored by all the public health units in the GTA, each of which this week recorded new highs this fall season for the percentage of ER visits that are related to respiratory illnesses.
And with less than a week to go before families gather indoors for the Christmas holidays, experts are worried that these indicators, and others such as the COVID-19 wastewater signal, combined with a low uptake of vaccines for COVID and RSV, will only continue to rise.
Fewer than 13-percent of Ontario’s population aged six months and older has received the most recent COVID-19 vaccine that targets the XBB subvariants.
Read more about this season’s respiratory virus season in this Toronto Star story.