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Piedmont Columbus Implements Visitation Restrictions Due to Flu Season

Columbus (Jan. 3, 2020) – In response to the current flu like illness in the community, Piedmont Columbus Regional has implemented visitation restrictions to help protect our patients and visitors.  Effective Monday, January 6, visitation to the Midtown and Northside Campuses as well as the John B. Amos Cancer Center will be prohibited for visitors ages 12 and under as well as visitors who are ill.

Children who are scheduled for diagnostic testing must wear a protective medical mask inside the building. Parents/guardians should escort children to a service desk to get a sticker badge. 

Visitation restriction will last until further notice, but is expected to be in place until the end of March, depending on flu trends. Signage and flu stations have been placed at all primary patient entrances; they are equipped with protective medical masks, Kleenex and hand sanitizer. People who are ill and showing flu-like symptoms, such as fever, cough, sore throat and body aches will be prohibited from visiting.

“We understand the importance of visitation, and we usually encourage it. However, it may be more practical to call, e-mail, facetime or send flowers to your loved one while they are in the hospital during this time. Our goal in putting these restrictions in place is to slow the spread of the flu and protect our patients who are vulnerable,” said Susan Harp, Infection Preventionist at Piedmont Columbus Regional.

Harp also offered the following tips from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to help prevent the spread of flu as people head back to work and school after the holidays:

·         Get a flu shot. It may take 2 weeks for the flu vaccine to begin working, but the season may linger on and getting a vaccination now will help protect you later.

·         Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. 

·         Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze.  Alcohol based hand rubs are also effective.

·         Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. 

·         Try to avoid close contact with sick people.

·         If you are sick with flu-like symptoms, the CDC recommends that you stay home until you go 24 hours without a fever. It is okay to leave home to get medical care.  Keep away from others as much as possible to keep from making others sick.

Piedmont Columbus Regional is enabling these visitation restrictions for the overall health and safety of our patients, visitors and staff members so we can provide the best and safest possible environment for everyone as we work to minimize the spread of germs during a very active flu season.


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