Influenza and COVID-19 are respiratory diseases with very similar initial symptoms and modes of transmission. Hence, scientists have long speculated that combining these viruses can lead to a possible “twindemic” where the spike in COVID-19 cases collides with a severe flu season.
Thankfully, the threat of the twindemic did not materialize during the last couple of flu seasons; scientists have reasons to believe this season could be different. According to many public health experts and policymakers, we may witness the feared COVID-19 flu twindemic this year.
Early reports suggest that this year’s flu season could be much more threatening than the last couple of seasons. Researchers fear that due to the especially mild flu seasons since the pandemic, many people have a compromised immunity against the influenza virus, making them vulnerable to severe infection.
According to early predictions, more people might need urgent flu treatments and 24-hour emergency rooms this year. Healthcare experts also expected that the season could stress the Houston, TX, healthcare system due to more people needing influenza treatment.
While most experts agree that the flu season this year will be severe, they are yet to form a consensus around the COVID-19 flu twindemic.
The primary reason is that we still need to fully understand how these respiratory viruses interact and evolve in each other’s presence. According to researchers, it is highly unusual for two respiratory viruses to peak simultaneously and cause a twindemic.
Many scientists point out that the surging cases of the omicron variant of COVID-19 during early January 2022 wiped out the flu in the US, indicating that the two viruses might be competing with the same host.
Predictions are plenty, from severe flu season to a full-blown twindemic, but learning from the past behavior of COVID-19, experts can say nothing with certainty.
The best foot forward is to be prepared, and that’s what we are doing at Memorial Village Emergency Room in Houston, TX. Our team is prepared to face any emergency during the flu season this year and committed to providing quality care.
According to experts in Houston, TX, vaccination is our best defense against the possible twindemic. Getting the updated flu shot this year is very important, and so is getting your booster COVID-19 shot.
Vaccination plays a crucial role in decreasing the severity of both diseases, leading to fewer hospitalizations and reduced need for an ER near you to treat the flu or COVID-19.
It is also important to know how flu symptoms vs. COVID-19 symptoms differ. Contact our Memorial Village Emergency Room experts to learn about flu causes, complications, and treatments. We also provide efficient COVID-19 treatments near you.
Social distancing, washing hands, wearing masks, and other preventive methods can also help mitigate the threat of the possible twindemic. Please visit Memorial Village Emergency Room for state-of-the-art facilities and compassionate emergency care.