April 1, 2019
In response to increasing positive flu cases and other seasonal respiratory illnesses in the community, St. Peter’s Health is instituting visitor restrictions for the Regional Medical Center effective January 23, 2019 at 6:00 a.m.
“Visitor restrictions at this time of year are common throughout the county at medical facilities. Our number one priority here at St. Peter’s is the safety of our patients and staff,” said St. Peter’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Shelly Harkins. “Although the flu is common this time of year, it is important to remember that it can also be deadly, especially for the immunocompromised, very young and elderly.”
While the restrictions are in effect, children 12 and under as well as anyone with the following symptoms are restricted from visiting the Regional Medical Center unless they are seeking care:
- Sore Throat
- Runny Nose
- Nasal Congestion
If you do visit a loved one in the hospital, please remember to wash or sanitize your hands frequently to avoid getting sick, or getting someone else sick.
Visitors, especially children, may not know they have the flu. They may not be showing flu symptoms and can easily pass the flu on to others. Many patients in the hospital have compromised immune systems can get very sick from visitors who may only have mild flu symptoms.
“We want to remind the community that visitors 12 and under as well as those exhibiting flu-like symptoms will not be able to visit patients on our Women and Children’s unit. While giving birth is a joyous time for families and parents are eager to introduce the newest member of their family to their young siblings, the health and safety of everyone, including the new baby, is our top priority,” said St. Peter’s Director of Quality Jon Scallan.
Those who fall into the restricted categories but wish to visit patients in end-of-life care will be allowed to as long as they follow safety protocols while at the facility, including masking and hand washing.