Take Extra Precautions During Cold and Flu Season

February 6, 2014 3:46 p.m.

In the midst of flu and cold season, Sarah Bush Lincoln is asking people with cold or flu symptoms to not visit others in the hospital.

SBL Infection Control Nurse Ramona Tomshack, RN, said, “We’re asking people to use common sense and help us protect the most fragile people in our community, the very young, especially those who are not vaccinated for the flu, and those who are older or with compromised immune systems.”

For everyone’s protection, hand sanitizer is available throughout the Health Center, near the doorways of each patient room, in main hallways, hospital entrances and in all of its clinic locations. To help eliminate germs, visitors are asked to use the hand sanitizer when entering and exiting patient rooms.

Following recommendations by the Illinois Department of Public Health, Tomshack asked people to limit the number of visitors to a patient’s room. In addition, people with acute respiratory illness, which is defined as fever, cough and or sore throat, should refrain from visiting others who are ill. If it is necessary to visit, masks are readily available to help stop the spread of germs.

Visitors should also use respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette, which includes coughing into your elbow instead of your hand, using a tissue to cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing and dispensing of it in the nearest waste receptacle.

Tomshack explained that all Sarah Bush Lincoln employees received the influenza vaccine in the late fall. If they were unable to receive the vaccine, they wear a mask to help protect patients and visitors from contracting the flu.

For more information, please contact Ramona Tomshack, RN, at 258-2189

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