The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

January 16, 2014

Madison County hospitals to restrict patient visitations during flu season

Restrictions will help limit the flu, officials say

Changes made over spreading flu

By Traci Moyer

The Herald Bulletin

ANDERSON — In an effort to protect their patients, and to limit the spread of influenza-like illnesses, Madison County hospitals are adopting new and temporary patient-visitation guidelines.

Effective Monday, Community Hospital Anderson, St. Vincent Anderson Regional Hospital and St. Vincent Mercy Hospital will not allow visitors who are under the age of 18, without special permission, visitors with influenza illness, fever or cough, or visitors who are not immediate family or a significant other during visitation hours.

The decision was made by the hospitals to ensure the health and safety of their patients, associates and visitors to the facilities.

By restricting the volume of visitors, discouraging visitors who are sick and limiting children from visiting, hospital officials say they can help limit the spread of the flu virus and provide the appropriate levels of care to their patients.

To help reduce the spread of colds or flu, medical professionals say people should use the following precautions:

u Keep hands clean, washing frequently with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand rubs

u Cover coughs and sneezes with a sleeve or tissue and dispose of used tissues promptly

u Keep surfaces clean including countertops, faucets, computer keyboards, light switches, TV remotes, phones and handles on doors and cabinets.

u If you feel sick or experience flu-like symptoms stay home to prevent the spread of the flu

u Get vaccinated for the flu each year. Flu shots or nasal sprays used to vaccinate for the flu are the best way to protect against influenza.

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