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California mom speaks out after losing infant son to RSV complications


CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. – A Southern California mother who lost her infant son to RSV is sharing her tragic story to warn other parents as a wave of the dangerous virus is rapidly spreading across the country.

“He was truly the best baby and the sweetest little soul. We loved him. We love him so much,” Jessica Myers said through tears.

Myers lost his son William on November 15. He was only 6 weeks old.

“The RSV treatments for him ended up being just too much. His little heart stopped and it took them a long time to bring him back. When they did, my son was brain dead, so we had a few days to say goodbye,” Myers says.

An intensive care nurse holds the foot of a patient suffering from respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which is being ventilated, in the pediatric intensive care unit of the Olgahospital at Klinkum Stuttgart.
(Marijan Murat/photo alliance via Getty Images)

William Myers was only a few weeks old when he fell ill with the virus. First it was a congestion, then a cough. The couple then took their baby to the crowded local hospital and said they had to wait six hours before William was tested for RSV.

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“When you arrive at the emergency room, ask for the RSV test immediately. This is a two minute nasal swab and a five minute test. I mean, they came back and the moment they knew William had RSV, we saw a doctor within five minutes because they knew how bad it was at the time,” says Myers. .

Once he tested positive for RSV, William was airlifted to another hospital and intubated. He died three days later.

“And that’s how seriously people have to take this is that when we finally got to the ER and they called hospitals in Southern California to find room for my son, he there were so many hospitals they called that just didn’t have a room,” Myers says.

This transmission electron micrograph reveals the morphological traits of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), 1981.

This transmission electron micrograph reveals the morphological traits of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), 1981.
(Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

“My son was born on October 3, a little earlier. Then, my son officially passed away on November 15, which was his due date. So my son left the world the day he was supposed to enter it. It really, really hurts,” Myers says.

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Now, Myers is warning other parents that this disease is very serious and encouraging families to take extra precautions this holiday season.

“I know it’s hard to say no to your family, especially during the holidays. But, for my family, there will never be Christmas. So for the other families, I really want them to have more Christmases. There will be other Christmases. Just protect your kids,” says Myers.

The headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, United States, Saturday, March 14, 2020

The headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, United States, Saturday, March 14, 2020
(Elijah Nouvelage/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

In the past month alone, RSV cases have skyrocketed across the country. In good news, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that cases are declining nationwide, but remain at concerning levels.

Surging cases of RSV, influenza and COVID are fueling a shortage of pediatric beds.

Many hospitals say they don’t have enough resources to handle the influx. Just over the past month, healthcare facilities in California, Oregon and Massachusetts have added overflow facilities, even building tents outside emergency rooms. Some have had to delay elective surgeries due to the large increase.

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Doctors say a runny nose, coughing, sneezing and fever are the main warning signs. But, little William didn’t have a fever, so it varies.

As we enter winter, doctors say they are preparing for a tripledemic, with cases of RSV, influenza and COVID peaking in January.

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