Mission Health increases restrictions on visitations as flu precaution

Press release

From Mission Health

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (Dec. 20, 2012) – Mission Health is restricting visitors to its hospitals because of an increase in reported influenza-like illness throughout North Carolina. Only immediate family members over 12 will be permitted in patient care areas. This precaution is being implemented at Mission Hospital and all Mission Health member hospitals in western North Carolina: McDowell Hospital in Marion, Transylvania Regional Hospital in Brevard, Blue Ridge Regional Hospital in Spruce Pine and Angel Medical Center in Franklin.

“These restrictions are being imposed to protect the health of our patients and to minimize the spread of influenza throughout the community,” said Dale Fell, MD, Senior Vice President and System Chief Medical Officer of Mission Health. “We encourage other friends and family to call loved ones rather than visit the hospital to ensure their safety as we work toward our goal of achieving our BIG(GER) Aim: to get each patient to the desired outcome, first without harm, also without waste and with an exceptional experience for the patient and family.”

On Dec. 10, Mission Health asked friends and family of patients to limit visitations based on recommendations from Mission Health’s infection prevention department. Today, the department recommended an additional restriction be imposed as the number of reported flu cases continues to increase statewide.

All visitors are urged to wash their hands before and after visiting. Hand sanitizing stations are available at hospital entrances and throughout the buildings. People who have not yet received the influenza vaccine are urged to do so immediately, and to ensure their children have been vaccinated. However, children under 12 will not be permitted in patient care areas of the hospitals.

About Mission Health
Mission Health, based in Asheville, N.C., is the state’s sixth-largest health system and the region’s only not-for-profit, independent community hospital system governed and managed exclusively in western North Carolina. In 2012 Mission Health was named one of the nation’s Top 15 Health Systems by Thomson Reuters – the only health system in North Carolina to receive this recognition.

Mission Health, which traces its roots in the region back to 1885, operates five hospitals, numerous outpatient and surgery centers, and the region’s only dedicated Level II trauma center. Its medical staff consists of more than 1,000 physicians and is certified in over 50 medical specialties and sub-specialties. Mission Health has seven Centers of Excellence: Cancer, Heart, Mission Children’s Hospital, Neurosciences, Orthopedics, Trauma and Women’s Health. Mission Hospital, located in Asheville, is the system’s flagship hospital and is licensed for 730 beds. It is the regional referral center for tertiary and quaternary care and is the busiest surgical hospital in North Carolina. It also includes Mission Children’s Hospital– the region’s only children’s hospital. Other Mission Health member hospitals include Angel Medical Center in Franklin, Blue Ridge Regional Hospital in Spruce Pine, McDowell Hospital in Marion and Transylvania Regional Hospital in Brevard. With approximately 8,800 employees and 700 volunteers, Mission Health is dedicated to improving the health and wellness of the people of western North Carolina. For more information, please visit mission-health.org


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