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Memorial Health System Hospitals Lift Visitor Flu Restrictions


With flu cases in Illinois declining, Memorial Health System’s three hospitals – Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital in Lincoln, Memorial Medical Center in Springfield and Taylorville Memorial Hospital – have lifted their visitor restrictions.

For the safety of patients and their families, the hospitals in late January limited inpatients hospital visits to two visitors per patient at one time and said visitors should be limited to people who are at least 18 years old and showed no sign of illness.

The health system also encouraged those accompanying outpatients at Memorial facilities to consider these same recommendations.

In lifting the restrictions, the health system noted that influenza activity throughout Illinois had decreased and that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention listed Illinois’ flu activity as “regional” and no longer at “widespread.”

In Memorial Medical Center’s Emergency Department, for example, the number of patients presenting with influenza-like illness was at less than 1 percent this past week, said Karen Trimberger, director of Infection Prevention for Memorial Health System.

Seasonal flu activity usually peaks in January and February, beginning as early as October and ending as late as May, according to the CDC website. As many as 20 percent of all Americans get the flu each year.