Due to recent incidences of pediatric RSV in North Carolina, flu alert visitor restrictions for children aged 11 years old and younger (under 12) are in place for the NCCC, PICU and BMTU. Children aged 11 years old and younger are also not permitted in the waiting areas of the NCCC, PICU and BMTU unless there are extreme circumstances. Any exception to the child visitation must be made by Hospital Epidemiology.
Some Frequently Asked Questions:
Why are children under 12 years old unable to come to the hospital during certain times of the year?
Children 11 years old and younger cannot visit when the Flu Alert visitor restrictions are in place because children get sick more often than adults and when children get sick their bodies do not fight off infection as fast as adults. Children with respiratory viruses can spread their illness to others for up to two days before they have any symptoms of being sick. Almost half of children with viral respiratory infections do not have any symptoms, but can still spread the illness.
We understand that visitor restrictions present challenges for families and can be difficult for children who have a loved one in the hospital. However, it is important for the safety of all UNC Hospital patients that children 11 years old or younger not visit in person during these periods. Encourage children who wish to visit to write letters instead, or help them stay connected through Skype or FaceTime.
What about extreme circumstances?
If there are extreme circumstances during the Flu Alert visitation restriction time period and a patient requires a child 11 years old and younger to visit, any exception must be made by Hospital Epidemiology. Consult with the physicians and nurses about this.