LONGMONT, Colo. (KDVR) — The American Academy of Pediatrics is calling on the Biden Administration to declare an emergency due to an alarming surge of RSV cases.

The AAP is hoping their actions will trigger a national response, which means emergency support for rising RSV cases. Pediatric hospitals across the country, including Colorado, are strained with patients and thin resources.

A Longmont couple’s child is currently fighting the virus and sharing their story. Meadow Rae Maples is just 4 years old and is currently in the hospital with a severe case of RSV. The preschooler is full of energy, but around Halloween, things took a turn.

4-year-old with RSV placed on ventilator in ICU

Jameson and Terri Maples, Meadow’s parents, noticed a deep cough, labored breathing, runny nose and a high fever and rushed her to the emergency room, where she was diagnosed with RSV. Things quickly got worse, and Meadow was transferred to Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children.

Meadow was admitted to the ICU, intubated and placed on a ventilator for eight days after not responding to treatments. It’s been three long weeks in the hospital for the 4-year-old and her parents, but they say by the grace of God, she’s on the mend.

“It was probably the most traumatic experience of my life,” Terri said. “I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep, just not knowing what would happen next and just seeing all of the kids. It’s like a war zone in the E.R.”

With the constant care and long hospital stay, Terri and Jameson were not able to work and have mounting medical costs. The couple has a GoFundMe set up if you’d like to help.

Meadow Rae Maples (Photo courtesy of Jameson and Terri Maples)

‘Be careful with this RSV’

Terri said that during their three-week stay, they’ve seen so many children diagnosed with RSV and admitted.

Thankfully, Meadow is on the other side of the virus now and is expected to go home next week but will have to continue therapy and use an inhaler as needed. The couple has a message for all parents.

“You got to really be careful with this RSV because it can hit hard, and it doesn’t just hit babies, infants and young kids. It’s hitting everywhere, so just be careful, hug your loved ones and watch out for the signs,” Jameson said.