Hospital to implement stricter visitation rules

1/25/2013

By The Telegram

By The Telegram

St. Catherine Hospital is implementing stricter visitation guidelines to protect against the spread of communicable disease like influenza to patients, staff and visitors.

Like other hospitals across the country, St. Catherine is implementing stricter guidelines for the next several months. Effective immediately, the following guidelines will apply:

* All visitors are asked to stop at the collaboration station before going to a patient's room to be taught hand hygiene and specific precautions.

* No visitors younger than 12 allowed.

* Visitors who have symptoms including fever, body aches, coughing, sore throat, runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea are asked to stay home.

Scott Taylor, hospital president and CEO, said in a press release that the precautions are based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and are intended to protect the community as a whole. The hospital's goal is to decrease the high risk of exposure to an extremely communicable disease in all patient care areas.

"We understand how hard it is for family members when a loved one is hospitalized. However, we believe that as a family member, you would want the hospital to do everything possible to protect and care for your loved one," Taylor said in a press release.

Flu activity will be closely monitored using information from the CDC, as well as the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. The guidelines will stay in place until flu activity decreases to a low level.

Patient email is available through the hospital's website, www.stcath-hosp.org for friends and family members as an alternative to visitation. Email is delivered daily.

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