November 17, 2022
Seeing family and friends is important during the holiday season, but so is making sure you and your family are safe. It’s cold and flu season, and COVID has never gone away. This year there’s another common, yet easily spreadable respiratory virus called RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus). Together, these viruses are causing an increase in the number of people going to the emergency department for treatment when they get sick.
RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus)
RSV is a common respiratory virus that can be serious or even fatal, especially for babies and older adults, or people with weakened immune systems. This year is already worse than normal for RSV, with hospitals in Austin seeing a spike of cases in children — a trend seen in Central Texas and across the nation.
Symptoms of RSV are like COVID, flu, and the common cold, and include:
- Lack of appetite
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
There is no vaccine for RSV, but treatment is available.
Because cases are so high, Central Health-affiliated CommUnityCare and Carousel Pediatrics are expanding capacity and hours to see children for non-emergency cases.
Certain clinics will be open from 8 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Saturday.
You can make a same-day appointment for your child by calling Carousel Pediatrics at 512-744-6000 or online.
- Carousel North Lamar (9411 N. Lamar Blvd., Suite 120, Austin, TX 78753)
- Carousel Riverside (2237 E. Riverside Drive Suite 101-C, Austin, TX 78741)
- Carousel Southbrook (6425 S. I-35 Suite 100, Austin, TX 78744)
- Carousel Springdale (7112 Ed Bluestein Blvd., Suite 100, Austin, TX 78723)
Flu can cause mild to severe illness and can be fatal. Flu symptoms usually come on suddenly. People who have flu often have some or all these symptoms:
- Fever* or feeling feverish/chills
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle or body aches
- Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults. Not everyone with flu will have a fever.
If you are not having symptoms, it is recommended you get a flu vaccine. If you have a MAP or MAP Basic card you can get a vaccine from your doctor at CommUnityCare, People’s Community Clinic, and Lone Star Circle of Care.
What to do if you are having RSV or Flu symptoms:
- Call your doctor’s office
- If your doctor’s office is closed, MAP members can call the 24 hour nurse line at 1-855-880-7019 to speak to a nurse for medical advice
- Visit one of MAP’s Urgent Care or Convenient Care locations
If you have severe symptoms like high fever, difficulty breathing, extreme nausea, fainting, the ER might be the right place to help you.
Urgent and Convenient Care
MAP members can visit one of our contracted urgent care clinics, FastMed and NextCare, or walk-in clinics.
MAP Basic members can visit CommunityCare or Lonestar Circle of Care walk-in convenient care clinics.
CommUnityCare has two walk-in clinics where you don’t need an appointment — CommUnityCare Hancock at 1000 E. 41st St., Suite 925, and CommUnityCare Southeast Health & Wellness at 2901 Montopolis Drive.
Lonestar Circle of Care has one walk-in clinic at 18220 Ranch Rd 1431, Suite D Jonestown, TX 78641.
Visit CENTRALHEALTH.NET/MAP to access the MAP Handbook to get a complete list of urgent and convenient care locations on page 7.