As the incidence of influenza has markedly diminished, effective Wednesday, March 19, 2014, we will be lifting our current flu precaution visitor restrictions. This was the second year we implemented additional restrictions to our visitation policy in order to safeguard our patients, Associates, Physicians and visitors. Thank you all for supporting the temporary restriction.
Thank you for your cooperation
-Rachel Sebastian, Vice President and Site Administrator, Centegra Hospital-McHenry -Sheila Senn, Vice President and Site Administrator, Centegra Woodstock Hospitals -Dr. Irfan Hafiz, Vice President of Medial Affairs
On Jan. 9, we instituted a visitor restriction policy for the safety of hospital patients, visitors and Associates during this flu season. I’d like to remind you that the policy includes no visitors under the age of 14 years old on any inpatient unit (including visitors of Associates, physicians and volunteers). It limits visitation to immediate family members over the age of 14 in obstetrics and pediatrics. There also is a limit of two visitors per patient at a time on all units. In addition, the policy pertains to outpatient areas of the hospitals as well. These restrictions help reduce the transmission of influenza within the hospital.
Those who are feeling sick with a runny nose, sore throat, or fever, should not visit friends or loved ones in the hospital. Hospital visiting hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
Centegra Health System is experiencing increased cases of influenza and flu-related hospitalizations. For the safety of hospital patients, visitors and Associates during this flu season, We are asking for your cooperation once again with the implementation of our visitor restriction policy.
This policy will go in to effect Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014:
No visitors under the age of 18 years old
Limited visitation for significant others in obstetrics and pediatrics.
No visitors who are sick with a runny nose, sore throat, or fever
This is the second year we have implemented additional restrictions to our visitation policy. As an organization we believe it our responsibility to make every effort to reduce the spread of this illness. Please reinforce with your patients, and other with whom you interact in our facilities, our intentions to with these temporary restrictions.
Mandatory Medical Staff Vaccination
Vaccination is mandatory for all Associates and medical staff. To schedule your vaccination, please call Associate Health at 815-759-4372. Verification of vaccination is required and can be faxed to any of the numbers below:
CHM Medical Staff Office Fax: 815-759-8098
CHW Medical Staff Office Fax: 815-334-3856
Associate Health Fax: 815-759-4425
We would like to remind all clinicians of the importance of hand washing, masks and other appropriate measures to prevent the spread of flu. Likewise, for the safety of your other patients, consider expeditious discharge as soon as appropriate to prevent risk of infection to them as well as their families. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated and your patients will appreciate it as well.
In our effort to enhance patient and healthcare provider safety, last year Centegra Health System (CHS) made the influenza vaccination mandatory for all Associates. The program was a huge success in vaccinating over 95% of associates. This season all physicians are expected to participate in this Medical Executive Committee (MEC) approved initiative to increase our patient safety.
Research shows that vaccination is the single most important measure for reducing the impact of influenza not only on ourselves but our community as well. It is therefore our responsibility as healthcare workers to do the right thing for our patients. The Center for Disease Control, IDPH and The Joint Commission both highly recommend flu shots for all health care workers and many progressive healthcare organizations both locally and nationally have seen positive outcomes as a result of mandatory flu shot programs.
CHS requires all associates, physicians, volunteers, students, clinical contract workers, and identified vendors to receive an influenza vaccination in order to protect patients, Associates, family members, and the community from influenza. Exceptions will only be granted for medical conditions and religious beliefs. Both will require written documentation. Associates previously granted exemptions are required to complete a exemption renewal. Please review the updated CHS Influenza Immunization Program policy for details.
As the 2013-14 influenza season approaches. I have added a link to the current US influenza activity to the right sidebar and a link to CDC flu view, an interactive detailed influenza monitoring tool. This helps gauge the local community activity of influenza. This is particularly useful in community preparedness and assessing pretest probability of influenza in cases presenting with influenza like illness (ILI).
Note: As the season has not officially started, the map as of today (09/26/13) is showing data from last season.