Influenza cases are increasing and the virus is widespread across North Carolina. That has some local hospitals implementing safeguards to protect their patients.
CarolinaEast Medical Center in New Bern is restricting visitation to people 12 years of age or older due to an increasing level of influenza in the community. The hospital requests that there be no more than one to two visitors per patient at a time.
Visitation restrictions will go into place Wednesday at Carteret Health Care in Morehead City due to a high level of flu in the community. The hospital will post signs around the entrances informing patients and their families that visitation is limited to two healthy individuals at a time and that children under the age of 12 should not be in the hospital.
Starting Thursday, Vidant Health in Greenville will only allow visitors who are 12 years of age and older, and who are not exhibiting flu symptoms. Last month, Vidant implemented visitor restrictions at the James and Connie Maynard Children's Hospital due to a rise of people with respiratory viruses.
Wayne UNC Health Care in Goldsboro is limiting hospital visitation to healthy individuals that are 13 years of age and older. A news release from Dec 30 says the hospital has seen more than 120 positive flu cases this season with 70 of those being seen in the last two weeks.
While visitor restrictions have not been implemented at this time at UNC Lenoir Health Care in Kinston, the hospital is recommending that both children and anyone with flu-symptoms avoid visiting the hospital.
Onslow Memorial Hosptial has not issued visitor restrictions at this time.
The North Carolina Influenza Surveillance Summary from Dec 28 shows that the number of people reporting influenza-like illnesses so far this season is higher than the 2017-2018 and the 2018-2019 seasons. There have been 10 flu-related deaths in North Carolina this season, which runs through May.