In November, in a move to help protect against the spread of
influenza-like illnesses in the community, ALMH requested that
hospital visits be limited to spouses, partners and other family
members 18 years of age and older. The voluntary request applied to
those visiting inpatients or accompanying outpatients for tests,
treatments or procedures.
The hospital also took the further
precaution to restrict anyone who was less than 18 years old from
visiting its maternity department or pediatric patients. In
addition, adult visitors who came to the hospital with symptoms of
influenza-like illness were not permitted to visit the maternity
department or pediatric patients.
"We continue to monitor and evaluate the impact of influenza-like
illness in our community and may reinstate our voluntary call to
limit visitors or put into place other changes to ensure the health
and safety of our patients, visitors, staff, volunteers and
partnering physicians," according to Dolan Dalpoas, ALMH's president
"These proactive measures have been consistent with the standard
precautions to prevent the transmission of all respiratory
infections that are recommended by the Centers for Disease Control.
As we continue through the flu season, we will be ready to put these
measures back into place if needed."
"While all affiliates of Memorial Health System realized
increased patient volumes from the flu season, that increase did not
adversely impact operations, and all facilities operated
effectively," said Doug Rahn, Memorial Health System's senior vice
president and chief operating officer. "Our physicians and employees
spent a great deal of time planning and preparing for this flu
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The health system's influenza information line, 217-788-H1N1 (4161),
will remain active to answer the public's frequently asked questions
about seasonal and H1N1 influenza.
If you get sick with flu-like symptoms, Dalpoas said you should
stay home and avoid contact with others except to get medical care.
Most people with H1N1 have had mild illness and have not needed
medical care or antiviral drugs, and the same is true of seasonal
flu, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Symptoms of influenza-like illness include fever, cough, sore
throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, fatigue,
nausea, diarrhea, or vomiting.
[Text from file received
from Abraham Lincoln Memorial