A local medical center is joining 10 other hospitals in the region who have set visitor restrictions to protect patients from potential exposure to the flu.
Effective immediately, visitors to CarolinaEast can be no younger than 15 years old, and the number of visitors per patient should be limited to two at any time. Manager for Infection Prevention at CarolinaEast Medical Center Cathy Fisher says the restrictions for young visitors are in place due to several highly contagious viruses, including influenza.
“Children are more likely to be exposed to it, to carry it, to spread it, and so the limitation was decided upon. We held off for as long as we could but we have a lot of activity in the younger population as well as the older population which is what we predicted.”
Already this season, Fisher says nearly 160 patients have tested positive for the flu compared to last year when there were 167 total confirmed cases. Even though the flu season runs through May, the number of hospital admissions due to the flu has already more than doubled over the entire previous season.