News Center

Friday, January 17, 2014

Temporary visitor restrictions announced as flu cases surge

Temporary policy goes into effect Jan. 22, other measures bolstered

INDIANAPOLIS – With the escalation of H1N1 flu-related cases being reported nationally and at hospitals and other medical offices throughout Indiana, Franciscan St. Francis Health is working closely with the Marion County Health Department and Indianapolis Coalition for Patient Safety.

To lower the risk of exposure to our patients, employees and visitors, Franciscan St. Francis and other Indianapolis-area hospitals will implement a temporary visitor policy and take other proactive measures at our hospitals at Indianapolis, Mooresville and Carmel, effective Wednesday, Jan. 22.

Visitor restriction action plan
Our action plan includes:
Tier 1 Visitor Policy (least restrictive)
·         Restricting visitation to immediate family as identified by patient and patient’s designated support person.
·         Restricting visitors under 18 years of age who are not seeking medical care or are parents of pediatric patients.
·         Restricting those with symptoms suggestive of influenza.

There have been some questions about what constitutes immediate family members. They are specifically defined as: Only parents (including those under the age of 18) and step-parents, grandparents, spouses and domestic partners, and including pastoral/spiritual care staff and the patient’s designated support person. The only exceptions to the policy are special cases, such as visiting with patients where death may be imminent.

Other measures Franciscan St. Francis Hospitals will take:
·         Display signage describing visitation policy to public.

·         Ensure that all access points are well stocked with disposable masks and hand sanitizers.