Seeing illness spike, Emporia hospital restricts visitors

Local News

EMPORIA, Kan. (KSNT) – An Emporia hospital is restricting visitors Tuesday morning as it watches an increase in respiratory illnesses in the area.

Newman Regional Health announced children under 12 cannot visit patients in the Labor, Delivery and OB department in the fourth floor of the hospital. Siblings are allowed, but only after a nurse screens them for cold or fever symptoms.

The hospital additionally said no one should visit while having the following symptoms:

  • Fever.
  • Cough.
  • Sore throat.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Exposure to someone with the above symptoms in the past seven days.

The symptoms fall in line with the diseases the hospital is monitoring a seasonal spike in.

“We are seeing an increase in upper respiratory viral infections caused by Influenza A, Influenza B, Respiratory Syncytial Virus and Coronaviruses,” said Ester Knobloch, Newman’s Infection Preventionist.

The visitor restrictions are standard procedure in the fall and winter months alongside a spike in pediatric cases of the illnesses, according to Newman’s Chief Operating Officer Julia Pyle.

“It is typical for hospitals to initiate sibling visitor restrictions to children’s and women’s inpatient areas for the protection of our patients,” Pyle said. “This is an annual practice and is usually lifted at the end of the winter season.”

While the hospital restricts visitors for the season, it has the option to send a greeting to current patients through its website.

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