Flu season prompts action

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To help reduce the spread of the H1N1 flu virus and other respiratory illnesses, Chandler Regional Medical Center has implemented restrictions on visiting hours.

Restrictions include:

Children 12 years of age and under are restricted from visiting the hospital;

Prospective visitors who are ill and have a fever, cough, diarrhea, rash, sore throat or runny nose are asked to not visit. (In such a case, you can write a note, and hospital staff will deliver it to the patient).

Those who do visit must wash or gel hands before and after entering a patient’s room. The medical center staff may also ask visitors to wear a mask or gown.

Siblings of newborn and pediatric patients who are 12 years old and under are also restricted from visiting. Expectant mothers are being asked to prepare for this and make prior arrangements.

Hospital staff is also suggesting ways that area residents can help stop the spread of the flu this season.

Consider having the entire family vaccinated against the seasonal flu. In the event you or your children do become ill, it is important to stay home until you have completely recovered.

Proper hand washing is also key, say hospital officials.

Be sure to:

Run hands under warm water and apply soap.

Lather the soap together and continue to scrub hands for 15 to 20 seconds – this is about the same amount of time it would take to sing “Happy Birthday” twice.

Rinse hands thoroughly and try not to touch the faucet when turning off the water.

Don’t forget to clean under fingernails.

For more information on the Novel H1N1 flu virus, visit http://www.cdc.gov/swineflu/key_facts.htm or call 1-800-CDC-INFO.

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