Hospitals’ visiting restrictions ease with drop in flu rate

2013-02-21T22:33:00Z Hospitals’ visiting restrictions ease with drop in flu rateBy KAREN HERZOG | Bismarck Tribune Bismarck Tribune

BISMARCK, N.D. - As the rate of new influenza cases continues to drop, St. Alexius Medical Center in Bismarck is lifting visitation restrictions immediately, according to marketing specialist Julie Skaret.

The decreasing number of cases means that St. Alexius is lifting restrictions from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and The Children’s Center. However, if the status of high-risk babies increases, the NICU can implement restrictions as it sees fit.

As with usual visitation to the NICU, there are signs asking that no one who is ill visit the area.

Flu restrictions at Sanford Health remain in place in the Neonatal ICU — only parents and grandparents may visit, said public relations spokesperson Kim Singer.

For this winter’s flu season, as of Feb. 15, the North Dakota Department of Health website shows the state has seen 3,633 total Influenza cases, with 143 hospitalizations, 32 long-term care facility outbreaks and eight deaths. All deaths have been in those over age 60. The Health Department’s graphics show the number of influence cases spiking at the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013 and declining sharply since.

Statistics on the rate of influenza cases by county can be seen at the North Dakota Department of Health’s website at www.ndflu.com.

Reach Karen Herzog at 701-250-8267 or karen.herzog@bismarcktribune.com.

Copyright 2015 Bismarck Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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