Sierra View Medical Center to Immediately Implement Influenza and Respiratory Syncytial Virus Visitor Restrictions

Sierra View Medical Center (SVMC) has begun implementing restrictions on respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and influenza (flu) to prevent the spread of these viruses to those most susceptible. SVMC will maintain visitation restrictions enforced for the safety of patients, visitors and staff until spring 2023 and will reassess again at that time.

Visitors under the age of 13 will be prohibited from entering any of SVMC’s Acute Care Units, as well as the Separate Skilled/Shared Nursing (DP/SNF) Facility, for their own protection as well as that of others. This restriction will be in effect until the end of the RSV/flu season, which depends on the number of cases seen in the area.

“Although influenza cases are relatively low in Sierra View at this time, RSV and influenza are making a noticeable early onset this year and impacting surrounding hospitals,” said Nancy Hurtado-Ziola, Ph.D., SVMC infection prevention lead. “With patient and employee safety being our priority, we are working together to prevent the spread of these viruses to those who are most susceptible.”

The SVMC Infection Control Department has reported the following number of cases that have passed through the hospital. At this time, 18 cases of influenza A tested positive and two cases of influenza B tested positive. As for RSV, no cases have tested positive, but as we track more cases nearby and across the state, that will change.

SVMC urges visitors to adhere to this restriction until further notice for the safety of visiting children and the well-being of patients, other visitors and community members. Here are some recommendations for community members to prevent the transmission of microorganisms:

· Continuous and thorough washing of hands. Always wash with soap and water or sanitize with alcohol-based hand sanitizer before coming into contact with other people.

· Clean household surfaces regularly to keep them as germ-free as possible.

· If possible, try to avoid crowded places like malls and movie theaters, where viruses can spread quickly from person to person.

· If you experience cold symptoms, always use a tissue when you cough or sneeze, immediately dispose of it properly, and then wash your hands thoroughly to avoid spreading the virus.

Finally, SVMC would like to remind everyone to eat a healthy diet, exercise and get enough rest to help keep their immune system at full strength.