LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 16, 2020) — UK HealthCare is temporarily amending its inpatient hospital visitation policy beginning Thursday, Jan. 16 to be proactive in helping protect the health and well-being of patients and health care workers during this flu season.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is currently reporting flu is widespread in Kentucky. UK HealthCare's hospitals and clinics are seeing an increase in the number of patients with influenza and influenza-like symptoms.
To help prevent the spread of flu, UK HealthCare has implemented the following measures:
· No visitors under the age of 12 (except in Bone Marrow Transplant where no visitors under the age of 18 are permitted).
· No visitors with any symptoms of flu-like illness.
· Only two visitors will be permitted in a patient’s room at one time.
· Visitors may be issued masks or other protective clothing for use when visiting.
· Additional restrictions may be in place in special care units such as women's and children’s units, critical care and oncology units.
· Compassionate visitation exceptions will be made on a case-by-case basis.
"These procedures are designed to help protect patients, visitors and staff from exposure to the flu and are in effect at all UK HealthCare inpatient units including University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital, Kentucky Children's Hospital, UK Good Samaritan Hospital and Eastern State Hospital," said Dr. Derek Forster, medical director for infection prevention and control at UK HealthCare.
It is still recommended anyone six months of age and older who haven't received a flu shot, receive one. The flu vaccination is still the first and best way to prevent influenza.
Everyday preventive actions are also recommended to stop the spread of germs.
· Covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough and sneeze.
· Washing hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub, if soap and water aren't available.
· Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
· Avoid close contact with sick people when possible.
The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" two years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers." We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.