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Olean General Hospital

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Olean General Hospital Revises Visitation Policy During Flu Season

Posted on: 10/01/2009

Olean General Hospital is changing its visitation policy in light of the threat of swine flu.  The new policy prohibits anyone under the age of 17 from visiting patients in the hospital.

 

“While we have not yet seen any confirmed cases of swine flu in our hospital, we are definitely seeing an increase in patients with flu-like symptoms,” said Richard Scott, M.D., chair of infection control at Olean General Hospital.  “We are taking this step as a precautionary measure to protect our patients who are much more vulnerable to the effects of the flu.”

 

The new policy change targets children because they are an "at-risk population," Dr. Scott said, noting that the flu has been known to rapidly spread through schools.

 

Everyone entering Olean General Hospital will be greeted with a large poster discouraging them from visiting patients if they have a cough, fever, sore throat, or other flu-like symptoms.  Masks will be available for anyone to wear as a protective measure while in the hospital.

 

“We are asking for the cooperation of the community,” said Dr. Scott.  “We are not yet officially into the flu season yet, but we feel that limiting visitation is a responsible first step in protecting the most at-risk populations and helping to reduce the spread of infection.”

 

Hospital officials stressed that exceptions may be made for OB patients or visitation for the terminally ill, but that the overall goal is to take a proactive approach to limiting the spread of swine flu.

 

For updated information regarding the swine flu, individuals are encouraged to visit www.cdc.gov.

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