Flu season leads to hospital visit restrictions

Due to a spike in local cases of the flu, Madera Community Hospital has imposed certain visitor restrictions until the flu season passes.

Following county recommendations and patient safety protocol, children under 12 years and any visitor with rash, diarrhea or respiratory symptoms, such as fever, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath are restricted from hospital visitation, according to hospital spokeswoman Sherrie Bakke. This will reduce the risk of exposure to hospitalized patients, she said.

The course of flu is unpredictable in both adults and children, and it is difficult to identify the stage of transmission with certainty,” said Bakht Roshan, M.D., infectious disease specialist.

“Madera Community Hospital, along with thousands of hospitals across the United States, is asking, during flu season, that only immediate family and no children visit hospitalized patients, and if you are ill, please refrain from visiting,” Roshan said.

The hospital provides free supervised child care in its Children’s Visitor Center. This service is available while parents receive services on the hospital premises or visit hospitalized patients. The Children’s Visitor Center is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and is located near the Family Health Services Clinic on the hospital campus. For information, call 675-5402.