With flu season hitting a peak in central Illinois, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) recommends health care facilities adhere to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) comprehensive influenza prevention and control recommendations.
HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital wants to remind guests of the important role everyone plays in guarding patient safety. St. Mary’s provides respiratory etiquette stations at hospital entrances, which have tissues, masks and sanitizing hand gel for visitors. There also are posters at the entrances outlining hospital visitor guidelines.
During flu season, St. Mary’s Hospital highly recommends the following visiting guidelines.
DO NOT visit hospital patients if you:
Have a cold or any flu-like symptoms including fever or chills, sore throat, body or muscle aches, headache, cough or runny nose.
Are under age 18 years of age.
Are a pregnant woman.
A limit of only two people should visit a patient at any one time.
Soap and water or hand sanitizers are the most effective ways to prevent influenza transmission and should be used when entering and exiting patient rooms.
“During the flu season, St. Mary’s requires visitors with flu-like symptoms or anyone who had not received a flu shot to wear masks on hospital grounds,” says Julie Schinzler, manager of quality assurance and infection prevention for HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital. “With this recommendation from IDPH, we are taking these requirements a step further asking guests with flu-like symptoms to stay home and avoid visiting the hospital.”
For more information about the flu, visit flu.gov.