Hospital officials: Please don't visit if you're sick

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot

Local health officials are urging people with flu-like symptoms to avoid visiting loved ones at the county's two hospitals.  

As the number of people with flu-like symptoms visiting the Chambersburg Hospital and Waynesboro Hospital Emergency Departments has increased in the past week, officials are concerned about increased risk of spreading the flu.

“Typically, we encourage visitors, but it's best to stay home if you have flu symptoms so you don't risk spreading it to people in the hospital,” said Ericka Kalp, Director of Epidemiology and Infection Control for Summit Health.  “Precautions like these help to limit the spread of flu and other viruses.”

Flu Tips

For most people who have the flu or flu-like symptoms, the best remedy is to stay home, rest, and drink plenty of fluids, according to Kalp.

Kalp noted that most people with the flu will have mild illness and won't need medical care or antiviral medicine.

For severe illness, Kalp said you should seek emergency care immediately.

“If you get sick and experience any of the following symptoms, go to the emergency room right away.

Children:

o    Fast breathing or trouble breathing

o    Bluish skin color

o    Not drinking enough fluids

o    Not waking up or not interacting

o    Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held

o    Fever with a rash

o    Flu-like symptoms that improve but then return with a fever and worse cough

Adults:

o    Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

o    Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen

o    Sudden dizziness

o    Confusion

o    Severe or persistent vomiting

Those at a high risk of developing complications from the flu should contact their health care provider to decide whether or not they need to be examined if they have flu symptoms,” Kalp said.

Children, seniors, and people with chronic health conditions are at a higher risk of developing severe complications caused by the flu, according to Kalp.

For more information on flu symptoms and prevention, visit www.SummitHealth.org/prevent-flu.