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Number Of Flu Cases On Rise

By Staff | Oct 21, 2009

The waiting area at Wetzel County Hospital was filled and overflowing Thursday as local residents lined up to get the seasonal influenza vaccine. The facility has been conducting flu clinics at various times since Oct. 1. Two clinics remain: from 1-6 p.m. on both Oct. 22 and 29. These clinics are for the seasonal flu vaccine and not H1N1, or Swine Flu. (Photo by Amy Witschey)

According to Wetzel County Hospital cases of seasonal flu and H1N1 flu in the area have increased.

Consequently the facility is implementing some new guidelines regarding visits at WCH.

-Disinfectant hand wipes are provided at entrances. All visitors are asked to wipe their hands upon entry to the hospital and to refrain from touching any surfaces in the hospital as much as possible.

-People with flu-like symptoms and colds coming to the hospital for treatment will be asked to disinfect their hands, wear protective masks, and are asked not to visit patients in the hospital.

-Visitors under the age of 12 will not be allowed to visit the hospital unless accompanied by an adult and wearing a protective mask in the presence of patients.

-Patients with flu-like symptoms are limited to one visitor and are to wear protective masks when visitors are present.

-People with flu-like symptoms and colds within the last 72-hours are asked not to visit patients in the hospital.

Feel free to talk to anyone on the medical team about these new policies. Visitation to certain patients may also require additional restrictions, which their medical team can discuss.

“Thank you for your understanding during this time,” said Chief Executive Officer George Couch. “Our goal is to keep everyone healthy and prevent the spread of H1N1 flu. Also, don’t forget to follow proper hand-washing guidelines to further prevent the transfer of the H1N1 flu to others.”

The hospital still has two scheduled flu clinics scheduled for the general public: Oct. 22 and 29, 1-6 p.m. Also, the Wetzel-Tyler Health Department in Paden City has one scheduled for Oct. 23 from 9-11:45 a.m. and 1-3:45 p.m. Flu vaccine is available for ages four years and older at the health department’s clinic.

The Wetzel-Tyler Health Department has also announced an H1N1 Influenza Clinic for children age six months to 35 months of age only at the department. Call for an appointment. The clinic will be held Nov. 10, 9-11:45 a.m. and 1-3:45 p.m. Children vaccinated on this date will be asked to return for their second dose in one month (appointment date will be given for second dose at the time first dose is given).