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Friday, October 23, 2009

Capital Region Hospitals Announce New Visitation Guidelines to Protect Patients from Flu, Other Infectious Diseases

A Joint Release of:
Albany Medical Center
Ellis Medicine
Northeast Health
St. Peter's Health Care Services
Saratoga Hospital
Seton Health

Pamela Rehak

New visitation guidelines are being implemented at nine local hospitals to further protect patients from influenza and other infectious diseases. Implementation of the new guidelines will begin today at some of the hospitals and on Monday for others.

Patient units of Albany Medical Center, Albany Memorial Hospital, Bellevue Woman’s Center, Ellis Hospital, St. Mary's Hospital (Troy), St. Peter's Hospital, Samaritan Hospital, Saratoga Hospital and Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital will restrict visits by:

  • children 12 and under;
  •  any visitor with respiratory symptoms (fever, sore throat, cough, shortness of breath) a rash or diarrhea; and,
  • only two visitors will be permitted in a patient's room at one time.

The hospitals are also urging all visitors to use hand-washing stations before entering and upon leaving a patient's room. Hand sanitizers are available at many hospital entrances and at many other locations throughout these hospitals, including the doorways of many patient rooms.

Some hospitals have special care units or physical layouts which may have additional visitation restrictions.

The restrictions, which were developed after discussion between the chief medical officers at each institution, are being implemented as the New York State Department of Health is reporting that the H1N1 virus is now widespread across the state.

As such, area hospitals are experiencing a significant increase in patients presenting in the emergency department with respiratory and/or influenza-like symptoms. These temporary restrictions are intended to help limit the transmission of the virus and protect the health and safety of patients and the professionals who provide their care during the outbreak.

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Troy, NY 12180
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