COOKEVILLE – Cookeville Regional Medical Center is restricting visitation in its annual effort to help prevent the spread of flu and other seasonal illnesses.
Effective immediately, visitors age 16 and under are no longer allowed to visit patients, since children in this age group are a high source of flu transmission, officials say. There is an exception in the birthing center where siblings of newborns are permitted to visit with family.
Visitor restriction is implemented each year at CRMC during flu season based on Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines. CRMC is enforcing these precautions in the best interest of patients and the community as a whole to help prevent the spread of influenza in-house, hospital officials said.
A full list of restrictions is as follows:
- Any visitor with symptoms of flu (cough, fever, etc.) must wear a mask upon entering the facility.
- In the emergency room, patients coming in with fever or cough will be required to wear a mask.
- Children under the age of 16 will not be permitted to visit patients (Exception: siblings of newborns in the birthing center)
- Persons with flu-like symptoms are asked not to visit the hospital for their safety as well as the safety of our patients.
Hannah Davis, spokeswoman for CRMC, said the hospital has seen a mild number of cases this flu season. It’s unknown when the restrictions will be lifted. That depends on when the number of cases decreases, she said.
Adults and those over the age of 16 should also carefully consider the risks of visiting family or friends in the hospital since the risk of contracting the flu is likely higher in a hospital setting.