Flu concerns prompt Columbus Regional to Limit Visitation by Those Under 18.

Posted on January 10, 2020 by Jonathan Medford

News Release January 9, 2020
Columbus Regional Healthcare System
500 Jefferson St.
Whiteville, NC 28472

Contact: Stephanie Miller
Manager of Physician and Community Services
910-641-3662

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

In keeping with its primary commitment to patient safety, and to further prevent the spread of the flu, Columbus Regional Healthcare System has announced that their visitation guidelines will change effective January 10, 2020, to restrict visitors under the age of 18.

Except in extreme circumstances, visitors under 18 will not be permitted in the hospital unless they are a patient seeking medical care. This decision was made in response to concerns about the flu.

In addition to restricting visits by those under 18, CRHS is urging anyone with flu-like symptoms to avoid visiting the hospital. Flu-like symptoms include a fever greater than 100 degrees accompanied by sore throat, coughing, diarrhea or body aches.

“We know this change may pose an inconvenience to families with patients in the hospital,” said John Young, Columbus Regional president and CEO, “but it is very important that we do all we can to prevent the spread of the flu virus. We want to protect our patients, visitors, and staff, from accidental exposure to the flu virus that has become widespread in our community. We apologize
for any inconvenience, this change may have caused.”

The Limited Visitation policy will remain in effect until the incidence of flu has significantly decreased, noting that it may be several months before the hospital safely returns to normal visitation.
The following are everyday preventive actions that can be used to prevent the spread of flu.

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the
    trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an
    alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with your hands.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people. (Keep at least 3 feet of separation.)
  • If you are sick with flu-like symptoms, it is recommended that you stay home for at least 24
    hours after your fever is gone, except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever
    should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.)
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.

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