LAKE COUNTY, Ohio — As the flu continues to spread across Northeast Ohio, Lake Health is putting new restrictions on visitors to three of its hospitals.
In a statement issued Tuesday afternoon, officials announced the following "temporary" guidelines for West Medical Center in Willoughby, TriPoint Medical Center in Concord Township, and Beachwood Medical Center:
- Visitors must be 18 years of age or older; visitation will be limited to two healthy visitors per patient
- Adults who exhibit any flu-like symptoms or have been diagnosed with the flu within the past seven days are asked not to visit
- All visitors will be asked to wash their hands before and after a patient visit using soap and water or the alcohol-based hand sanitizer located in each patient room
In addition, all patients and visitors to the urgent care centers will be asked to wear masks to prevent the spread of germs, and all patients currently showing flu-like symptoms are asked to reschedule any routine outpatient appointments until they are feeling better. The hospital system will make exceptions for the above guidelines "in some circumstances."
832 Ohioans were hospitalized with the flu between Jan. 26 & Feb. 1, a 36% increase from the previous week. Eight people (including a 16-year-old girl) have died from the flu in Cuyahoga County this season, and an 11-year-old Lake County girl also lost her life last week.