DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Hospitals across the country are struggling right now facing a surging number of patients between three respiratory illnesses: RSV, the flu and COVID-19.

Local health leaders say each of those viruses presents a unique set of challenges.

“Anytime that we do have difficulty breathing, that’s when we need to seek medical attention,” said Clark County Combined Health District Health Commissioner Charles Patterson.

Patterson says Clark County is experiencing triple the amount of flu hospitalizations compared to COVID hospitalizations. With all three viral illnesses on the rise, both Springfield Regional Medical Center and Miami Valley Hospital are near capacity for patient beds.

“If you look at the map that’s put out every two weeks by the CDC showing flu levels, Ohio is about the darkest shade indicating the highest amount of activity,” said Miami Valley Hospital Chief Medical Officer Dr. Roberto Colon. “The maximum level of respiratory illnesses hasn’t been reached, we are still seeing increases in influenza cases across the country.”

While all three respiratory illnesses are circulating at high levels, Patterson urges people to social distance and mask when possible. And, to monitor a specific symptom.

“At the same time, we need to consider the mental health of these people, it’s not that we ignore them or never visit them on the guide of protecting them, we have to figure out how to do these things safely and social distancing and masking is that can be done while we share with our loved one,” said Patterson.

Dayton Children’s and other children’s hospitals across the nation are at full capacity or nearing it for RSV cases.