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Flu Restrictions Lifted At Detroit Medical Center Hospitals

May 10, 2019

After what has been one of the longest flu seasons in more than a decade, the 2018-19 influenza season is finally nearing its end point according to the Centers for Disease Control’s weekly influenza surveillance report.

The Detroit Medical Center took every necessary precaution to minimize the spread of influenza this year and, after a drop in cases, the DMC is lifting the visitor restriction protocol at all of its campuses. This includes Children’s Hospital of Michigan, Detroit Receiving Hospital, Harper University Hospital, Heart Hospital, Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital, Hutzel Women’s Hospital, Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan and Sinai-Grace Hospital.

During flu season, the DMC implemented visitation guidelines stating visitors under the age of 12 would be not be allowed to visit our inpatient and observation units and only two visitors will be allowed at a time. Any visitor that displayed symptoms of sore throat, runny nose, muscle aches, fever, cough, sneezing or chills was not permitted to visit a patient. Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette signage were placed at the main entrances of our hospitals and several other locations throughout our facilities.

The Centers for Disease Control estimates there were between 36,100-59,600 flu deaths during the 2018-19 flu season from October 1, 2018, through April 27, 2019. These estimates are preliminary and based on data from CDC’s weekly influenza surveillance reports summarizing key influenza activity indicators. The 2018-19 influenza season was the longest in more than a decade according to the CDC’s weekly influenza surveillance report.

Despite this decrease in flu activity, any patient presenting with suggestive signs/symptoms could still be infected with the flu virus. Therefore, when there is a high suspicion of influenza infection, the patient should be placed under appropriate isolation while awaiting the results of diagnostic testing. 

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