Temporary Visitor Restrictions Imposed at 5 Henry Ford Hospitals

December 20, 2019
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DETROIT – With flu activity increasing across Michigan, Henry Ford Health System has implemented temporary visitor restrictions at its five acute care hospitals to protect patients, team members and visitors from the spread of flu illness.

The visitor restrictions include the following:

  • Visitors are limited to those 12 years and older.
  • Patients who have flu-like symptoms and have scheduled appointments or procedures should wear a mask and maintain proper hand hygiene.
  • Visitors who have flu-like symptoms are asked not to visit a hospitalized loved one, family member or friend until their symptoms improve.

These measures take effect Friday, Dec. 20 at:

  • Henry Ford Hospital. In the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit only, visitors are limited to those 13 years and older.

“Flu activity is already at regional levels in Michigan and likely to worsen in the coming weeks,” says Betty Chu, M.D., Henry Ford’s associate chief clinical officer and chief quality officer. “This is a preemptive measure we take every year to help minimize the spread of flu illness and to protect the health of our patients, families who come to visit their loved ones and our team members. A decision to lift the restrictions will be made at a later point based on flu activity.”

Dr. Chu reminds people that it’s not too late to get a flu shot.

“The flu shot is the best way to protect people against the flu,” she says. “We encourage anyone older than six months of age receive the flu shot. We have plenty of vaccine available across our health system for those who haven’t yet receive their flu shot.”

Flu-like symptoms come on suddenly and include the following:

  • Fever.
  • Extreme tiredness.
  • Headache.
  • Muscle aches.
  • Cough.
  • Sore throat.

Antiviral medicines are available to treat the flu, and work most effective if taken within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms. It can reduce symptoms and shorten flu illness.

Dr. Chu says everyone can limit the spread of germs by practicing these daily healthy habits:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Clean and disinfect touched surfaces at home, work and school.

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MEDIA CONTACT: David Olejarz / David.Olejarz@hfhs.org / 313.874.4094