MOHAVE COUNTY–To help combat the rising number of people catching the flu, especially children, both Valley View Medical Center and Havasu Regional Medical Center have implemented restrictions when it comes to visiting people hospitalized.

Director of Marketing Ryan Perkins said the restrictions are based on recommendations from the Mohave County Department of Public Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to reduce exposure to patients, employees, volunteers and visitors to seasonal illnesses, such as, influenza and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)

The following restrictions are:

  • Do not visit family members or friends, who are patients in the hospital, if you have signs of possible flu, including runny nose, cough, fever, etc.
  • Children ages 12 and under are not permitted to visit the inpatient units unless they are seeking medical care or have special circumstances. Children may remain in the lobby waiting area but must be accompanied by an adult.
  • Additionally, visitors are asked to wash their hands before entering a patient’s room and uponleaving. Sinks and waterless hand sanitizers are available in all patient rooms.

The restrictions are effective immediately and will remain in effect until the CDC removes these recommendations, said Ryan.

Statistics show since Nov. 24, there have been 3,249 people who tested positive for Influenza A and 592 for Influenza B in the United States. The CDC reported 2017-2018 was the worst flu season on record with 80,000 people dying from the flu and 172 of those deaths involving a child.

The Mississippi Heath Department announced Thursday they have seen their first pediatric death involving an individual under the age of 18. The victim reportedly had underlying health issues.

Influenza, which is very contagious, kills between 12,000 and 49,000 people and can send more than 700,000 people to the hospital. Steps such as these can be taken to prevent contracting the disease:

  • Get The Flu Shot: the CDC recommends this step as an important way to prevent contracting the flu.
  • Stop The Spread Of Germs: use preventive ways to help stop the spread of germs. Avoid contact with people who may have the flu and use alcohol-based hand rubs at all times. Be sure to cover your mouth when you cough and sneeze.
  • Use Antiviral Drugs As Prescribed: if you’re prescribed an antiviral drug from your doctor, the CDC recommends you take it to help fight off the flu.

For more information on flu prevention, click HERE.