Hospital imposes visitor restrictions

LA PORTE, Ind.– A second area hospital has placed visitor restrictions as the 2013-2014 flu season continues.

In a press release from IU, the Starke County hospital is one of several locations with the restricitions.

According to the Indiana State Department of Health, influenza activity is continuing to increase in the United States. The proportion of outpatient visits for influenza-like illness (ILI) was 3.0% above the national baseline.

"It is for this reason that IU Health will be implementing precautionary measures of visitor restrictions until further notice to protect patients, families and team members from unnecessary potential exposure to the flu virus," according to a press release issued Thursday. "These precautionary measures will be in effect at all IU Health facilities to include IU Health La Porte and Starke hospitals, Lakeshore Surgical Center, and all rehabilitation facilities. This temporary policy is effective immediately."

Visitation is restricted to: Healthy adults (ages 18 and older) may visit patients, including parents, spouses/significant others and spiritual counselors. Exceptions can be made in special circumstances. A “healthy” adult is one who is not experiencing any flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, tiredness, body aches, diarrhea or vomiting; and someone who has not been exposed to the flu virus in the past week.