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Ohio health officials encourage vaccines for respiratory viruses ahead of flu season

For the week Aug. 17, ODH reported 4,226 additional COVID-19 cases.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio Department of Health's director told the community to prevent respiratory illnesses by staying up-to-date on vaccinations.

The reminder comes amid a rise of COVID-19 cases in Ohio.

For the week Aug. 17, ODH reported 4,226 additional cases.

As kids head back into the classroom, ODH Director Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff said it's important to make sure they are fully vaccinated.

Vanderhoff, along with others, advised that the public should also take preventive measures to stop the spread of Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and influenza.

"COVID isn't gone and that we really do need to prepare ourselves for the upcoming respiratory season which will undoubtly include COVID, influenza and RSV again this year," he said.

According to Vanderhoff, an RSV monoclonal antibody treatment will become available for children in mid-October.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the shot for infants younger than 8-months-old who were born during RSV season, and for children between 8 and 19 months who are at higher risk of severe RSV.

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