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INFLUENZA ON THE RISE – FMH TAKES PRECAUTION

Influenza activity continues to increase in the United States. In Illinois, many counties have experienced high levels of influenza-like illness (characterized as fever of 100ºF [37.8 ºC] or higher plus cough and/or sore throat). The Illinois Department of Public Health has issued recommendations regarding temporary visitor restriction policies to assist in the prevention of and spread of the influenza virus.

 

During this time of increased incidence of the influenza-like illness in Illinois, Fairfield Memorial Hospital is taking additional measures in order to lower the risk of any virus or bacteria being spread to patients and residents within the facility.

 

FMH asks if you have any acute respiratory illness symptoms such as a cough, fever, or sore throat, to please avoid visiting patients in our facility, if at all possible. Should it be necessary for you to visit a loved one, a mask should be worn.  Individuals entering our facility are welcome to take advantage of the respiratory hygiene stations located at each of the hospital entrances.  These hygiene stations include hand sanitizer, face masks, gloves, and tissues, along with educational information about the flu.

 

Individuals most at risk for influenza include individuals over the age of sixty-five, young children, especially those under two years of age, pregnant women, and those with chronic health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, and heart disease.  Therefore, anyone under the age of eighteen is asked to NOT visit the hospital and nursing home except to receive medical care themselves.  However, special considerations will be granted as necessary.

 

If you are seeking medical attention in the emergency room and have been exposed to a known source (someone who has been a confirmed case), please advise the emergency room staff immediately so appropriate precautions can be taken.

 

Additionally, patient visitors will be limited to two visitors per patient at any one time.

Fairfield Memorial Hospital appreciates cooperation and understanding from the community as we strive to keep our patients, staff, and community healthy.

 

If you would like more information on symptoms and treatments of influenza or information on the activity level of influenza-like illness in the United States, visit www.cdc.go/flu/index.htm.