CLEVELAND - Due to a very aggressive flu season, some local hospitals are restricting visitors for the safety of their patients.
University Hospital Parma and University Hospital Elyria are not allowing visitors under the age of 18. In addition, anyone who shows any flu-like symptoms will not be allowed to visit patients. The hospital suggests calling ahead to check the latest visitor restrictions if you are planning on visiting anyone who is hospitalized.
Akron Children's Hospital put the following restritions into place through March 31: visitors must be 12 or older and anyone who is ill is asked to not visit at all. Visitor numbers are restricted to four or fewer in each room at one time.
According to the CDC in their most recent FluView activity report, Ohio is one of 46 states showing widespread influenza activity. That number is up from 36 in the previous report. Numbers like these have not been seen since the 2014-15 flu season, which the CDC says was the most severe season in recent years.
According to the Cuyahoga County Board of Health, over the past few weeks, there have been 246 flu-related hospitalizations, and more than 1,100 emergency room visits for fever and flu-like illnesses.
“As a result of these levels, we are again recommending that all residents older than six months of age receive a flu shot. By staying healthy, you can help to keep your family members and co-workers from getting sick. If you do get the flu, a flu shot will make your symptoms less severe,” the board of health said in a news release.
Symptoms of the flu include fever, headache, cough, runny or stuffy nose, fatigue and muscle aches. The flu can lead to complications like pneumonia, dehydration and worsening of chronic medical conditions.