COVID, respiratory viruses rise in NH: What to know

DOVER — With cases of COVID-19, influenza, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) rising in New Hampshire, local health officials are advising caution, and Wentworth-Douglass Hospital has returned to required masking for staff.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking the rise of the JN.1 variant of COVID nationally. It is now the most widely circulating variant.

Local medical professionals are taking precautions to prevent the spread of the virus.

Two women, wearing protective masks due to the COVID-19 virus outbreak, look out a window at the Elliot Hospital, Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020, in Manchester, N.H.

Wentworth-Douglass Hospital, which is part of the Mass General Brigham system, has instituted a new respiratory virus policy, according to hospital spokesperson Adam Bagni.

“We announced this policy back in October, which includes mandatory masking for employees in clinical settings when CDC data reaches a certain range,” said Bagni. “The masking went into effect for staff in clinical settings Tuesday, Jan. 2 at all MGB facilities, including at Wentworth-Douglass. Patients are only ‘strongly encouraged,’ not required, to mask.”

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