Coronavirus Isn’t the Only Serious Respiratory Illness Threatening Arctic Residents

Preventable diseases such as RSV and the flu grip Northern communities in North America every year, straining already limited health systems.

So far, there have been zero confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Nunavut. But experts are also worried about the spread of other respiratory illnesses, including tuberculosis and RSV (respiratory syncytial virus), which appear in the territory every year and have long-lasting health effects.

RSV is particularly dangerous for young children. It’s the most common cause of lower respiratory infections in children around the world, and the top reason why infants are admitted to hospitals in the developed world, researchers say. Even among children not considered at risk for RSV, it can be a dangerous illness, causing significant stress for families no matter the outcome.

For many adults, the symptoms are similar to a common cold. But for young, vulnerable babies, RSV is a serious ailment that can land them in the hospital.

Those most at risk for the virus are babies born prematurely or those with heart or lung conditions. And, research in Canada has shown, babies born in Inuit communities are also at much higher risk than other young children in the rest of the country. Read more at ArcticToday.

Categories: Freelance Articles

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