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Mahaska Health to Limit Visitors in Effort to Fight Spread of Flu

By Ellis Codjoe, January 18, 2018

Beginning immediately, Mahaska Health Partnership will limit the number and age of visitors to specific areas of the hospital.

“We recognize the healing power of having friends and family close by,” said MHP Interim CEO Chris Jepsen. “However, with the current situation regarding the wide-spread influenza this season, we feel it is prudent that we take steps now to protect our patients.”

The precautions include limiting the number and age of visitors allowed in a patient’s room on Inpatient Services as well as the Birthing Center. “The number of visitors in a patient’s room will be limited to two adults, over the age of 18, at a time. The only exception will be for hospice patients and siblings of newborns, who should only visit if they are healthy and have been fever free for at least 24 hours without medication,” Jepsen explained.

In addition, signs are posted at all facility entrances and infection control kiosks have been installed. The signs ask visitors to wear a mask if they are ill, to use hand sanitizer when entering and exiting the facility as well as patient rooms and to cover their cough with a tissue or their sleeve.

“We feel taking these steps will aid in protecting those populations most vulnerable to the flu, which include the elderly and very young,” Jepsen said. “As the flu season progresses, we will evaluate our policy accordingly.

“Our first priority is always the health and well-being of our patients. However, we recognize the large role a patient’s friends and family have in their recovery. We still welcome visitors for all patients, we just ask each individual to take precautions and to stay away if they are ill.”

“We appreciate the public’s understanding and cooperation as we all do our best to stay healthy during this flu vicious flu season,” Jepsen stressed.

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