Harris Regional Hospital and Swain Community Hospital limit visitation due to seasonal flu outbreak

Press release from Harris Regional Hospital and Swain Community Hospitals:

Due to high levels of respiratory viruses in the community, Harris Regional and Swain Community Hospitals are implementing seasonal influenza precautions. Visiting restrictions will be in place during peak flu season, which generally lasts through the first of April, we are  asking that the following people do not visit during this time:

Children under 12 years of age,
Pregnant women, and
People with chronic lung diseases.

In order to ensure the safety and wellbeing of its patients and to help prevent the spread of infection, Harris Regional and Swain Community Hospitals also asks the community to:
Please limit the number of visitors to three (3) per patient.
If you have flu-like symptoms, such as fever, cough or runny nose, or simply do not feel well, please do not visit.
Remember to wash your hands before entering and exiting a patient’s room and after leaving the hospital.
If you are in the hospital for tests or procedures and have a flu-like illness (fever over 100º with cough or sore throat), please ask for a mask.
According to North Carolina Department of Health and Human Sciences, North Carolina has “widespread” flu activity, meaning it is no longer limited to certain areas of the state. According to the most recent influenza surveillance report published by the NC DHHS, there have been 13 reported deaths this season.

According to a recent report from the NC DHHS, flu cases are on the rise in North Carolina and precautions to protect against the flu are highly recommended and encouraged.

The best ways to protect against the flu are to:

Get vaccinated. It is not too late to get a flu shot.
Practice good health habits. Avoid close contact with others; stay home when sick; practice good hand hygiene; cover your nose and mouth with a tissue; and avoid touching your eyes or mouth.
If prescribed by a physician, take flu antiviral drugs.

We encourage you to help observe these flu restrictions and educate our patients and patient families on these restrictions that are effective immediately. We will continue to observe visitor restrictions until further notice.

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About Susan Foster
Susan Foster is a clinical psychologist who moved to Asheville from the Boston area in 2013. She started with Xpress as a freelance health and wellness writer and is now the wellness editor. You can email her at sfoster@mountainx.com and follow her on Twitter @susanjfosterphd. Follow me @susanjfosterphd

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