Area hospitals ask for voluntary limits on visitors as flu activity increases

Flu season.
Flu season.(Pexels)
Published: Nov. 17, 2022 at 4:12 PM CST
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(25 News Now) - As seasonal flu activity increases, area hospitals are asking the public to voluntarily limit hospital visits.

This is being asked by OSF St. Francis Medical Center; UnityPoint Health Methodist, Proctor and Pekin; Hopedale Medical Complex and Kindred Hospital.

The limits on visitors is a precautionary measure to protect patients, visitors and staff from spreading the flu and other upper respiratory illnesses, according to a joint release from the Peoria City/County and Tazewell County health departments.

The request stems from community influenza and illness data gathered by the health departments - data indicating increased flu activity throughout the Peoria region.

Starting November 21, it is asked that:

  • Visitors should be at least 18 years of age and older. This will minimize patient exposure to children, who are known to be high risk for transmission of viral infections and will also help protect children from contracting an illness while visiting the hospital.
  • Limit of 2 visitors per patient.
  • Individuals who are not feeling well or have had flu-like symptoms in the past seven days should not visit hospitalized patients. Flu-like symptoms include a fever of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, cough, and/or sore throat.
  • When entering and leaving a patient’s room, everyone should wash their hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand foam/gel. Washing helps limit the spread of disease.
  • People should cough or sneeze into their arm, shoulder, or tissue (not hands) to reduce the spread of germs that can be passed from hands touching surfaces or people.