DALLAS -- To protect its patients, Salem Health is limiting visitors of patients at West Valley Hospital in Dallas, as well as Salem Hospital.
Visitors of all hospitalized patients must be 12 years of age or older and without flu symptoms of fever, sore throat and cough.
"We ask our patients' loved ones to help protect them from the flu by staying home if they're ill," said Ginny Posey, a registered nurse and vice president of patient care services for Salem Health. "Hospitalized patients are particularly vulnerable to contracting the influenza virus, and to experiencing serious complications from the flu."
Hospital staffers are advising patients' families of the new guidelines, and signs are posted at all hospital and unit entrances early next week.
Salem Hospital previously announced that visitors of patients in labor and delivery, mother/baby, and neonatal intensive care must be 18 years of age or older and free of flu symptoms. These guidelines remain in place to protect pregnant women and newborns.
To further prevent the spread of flu, both hospitals have been asking patients with flu symptoms to wear a mask during their visit.