DES MOINES, IOWA — The respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is common for infants and young children, and local doctors say it is increasing in central Iowa and across the country.

“Both inpatient and in the clinics we have seen a pretty significant increase in RSV cases,” said Chloe Butler, the Medical Director of inpatient pediatric care at MercyOne Children’s Hospital said. “Our pediatric floor is full today and probably with about 50% RSV. And that is pretty on trend with national here as well. Most children’s hospitals in the country are at or near capacity.”

Butler said that parents should look out for high fevers for several days, difficulty breathing, concerns of your child not getting enough oxygen; or if they are overly tired or dehydrated enough to where they won’t produce normal wet diapers.

A mother of four from Albia is just getting her youngest back to preschool on Tuesday after a scary weekend with RSV.

“She tested positive. So from there she declined, it was a rough weekend,” said Amanda Dye, talking about her three-year-old Everlee who tested positive for the virus last Wednesday. “Her cough had gotten worse, she was vomiting and she had gotten a rash all over her body which was weird. They said it was accompanied with RSV, I guess, this time around.”

Everlee had RSV when she was only four months old. Amanda tested her last week when she was showing symptoms of the common flu. Her preschool advised Amanda to get Everlee tested as there was a child sick with RSV.

This last weekend was rough, but Dye said that she is feeling better and glad to be in school again.

“Yeah for a few days it was just rest there wasn’t much we could do to help her besides a humidifier and you know, no medicine to give her but I mean it’s gotten better now…she’s doing good,” said Dye.

According to Butler, RSV is the most common cause of hospitalizations for children under two. And she expects the flu season to be bad, as children were not in public as much with covid restrictions.

Butler said that if you think your child might have RSV do not hesitate to call or line up a test.

As for MercyOne and the IT incident, the downtown location is completely operational. Clinics around the metro are getting their systems restored this week. If you need to schedule an appointment, make sure to call and not schedule one online for the time being.