The Outer Banks Hospital will be implementing visitation restrictions later this week out of concern for patient safety due to the increasing number of cases of the flu.
All Vidant Health facilities, including The Outer Banks Hospital in Nags Head, will only welcome visitors who are 12 years of age and older and are not exhibiting symptoms of an illness starting Thursday, Jan. 9.
Healthy children under the age of 12 may visit their healthy newborn sibling will still be allowed to visit. Additional exceptions will be made in special circumstances, or with prior approval from the patient’s healthcare team, according to a hospital statement.
“As always, family and visitors of any age should not come to the hospital if they have symptoms of a cold or flu, fever, diarrhea, vomiting or headaches,” the hospital announced Tuesday.
The precaution will help limit the spread of infections while protecting hospital patients, their loved ones and hospital team members, according to Vidant Health.
They noted the limitations are temporary and will be lifted as soon as viral respiratory illnesses decrease in the community.
To prevent the spread of viruses, health experts recommend washing hands frequently, keeping children home from school when sick, not sharing cups or utensils and covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze.
Additional information on visiting Vidant hospitals during flu season can be found at www.vidanthealth.com/visitingvidant.
This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.