RSV cases surge in NYC area

Respiratory syncytial virus infection (RSV) cases have nearly doubled in the New York City area since October. The number of cases is overwhelming hospitals.

Nearly 300 children a day are coming to emergency rooms and the number of children who need to be admitted to the hospital is up 49%, according to authorities.

The respiratory virus spreads via respiratory droplets produced from coughing and sneezing. For most children, the illness is mild. But it can be dangerous for young kids and infants.

RELATED: Kids with RSV, other illnesses keep flooding hospitals

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services should be ready to send doctors, nurses, and medical staff to New York, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Sunday.

"It’s a simple 10 letters," Schumer said at his regular Sunday news conference. "I'm telling HHS to address RSV, ASAP."

The U.S. is facing a surge of viruses including RSV, influenza and COVID-19.

"I’ve been practicing for 40 years. We have never seen an RSV surge like we are having over these past few weeks," said Dr. Charles Schleien, Chair of Pediatric Services at Northwell Health.