Increase in Flu Incidence a Concern
Due to an increase in influenza (flu) activity throughout North Carolina, Mission Health asks that family and friends limit their visits to patients in the hospital. In particular, Mission Health suggests that children under age 12 and people who do not feel well should call patients rather than visit them at the hospital. Mission Health is implementing this precaution at Mission Hospital and all Mission Health member hospitals and affiliates in western North Carolina including CarePartners in Asheville, McDowell Hospital in Marion, Transylvania Regional Hospital in Brevard, Blue Ridge Regional Hospital in Spruce Pine, Angel Medical Center in Franklin and Highlands-Cashiers Hospital in Highlands.
In addition to limiting exposure, the spread of the flu can be controlled with frequent hand washing. All hospital visitors are urged to wash their hands before and after visiting.
“The decision to limit patient visitations is based on recommendations from Mission Health’s Infection Prevention Committee in a system-wide effort to minimize the spread of influenza among our patients. Moreover, we don’t want healthy visitors picking up the flu and then spreading it throughout the community,” said William Hathaway, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Mission Hospital and Mission Medical Associates. “Our patients are our first priority and their health and safety is vital 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.”
Limiting visitations is a precaution often taken during flu season when flu activity reaches a certain level. Should the flu activity level increase, further restrictions may be recommended or implemented. As a reminder, Mission asks that those who do not feel well at any time, and not just during flu season, refrain from visiting loved ones in the hospital for infection prevention reasons.