Regional West Medical Center is temporarily limiting visitor access due to widespread respiratory illness throughout the region. Visitors under the age of 18 will not be allowed in the hospital until further notice, unless they are a patient or parent of a patient. In addition, any person with a fever, cough, or other flu-like symptom should not visit the hospital for social reasons.
Visitor restrictions were put in place based on public health and Regional West Community Health surveillance that showed a large increase in school absences in Scotts Bluff County this week.
“We’ve seen a rapid increase in the number of patients with respiratory illness, so we are adjusting the visitation policy to limit unnecessary exposure to our patients. While visitors play an important role in our patients’ recovery, promoting the health and well-being of our patients and staff is our highest priority,” said Chief Medical Officer Matthew Bruner, MD, FACOG.
In addition to the medical center restrictions, visitors under age 18 will not be allowed at The Village at Regional West until further notice.
Area residents can take steps to avoid respiratory illness by washing hands frequently, using hand sanitizers, covering coughs appropriately (use a tissue and discard, or cough into your elbow instead of your hands), and staying home from work and/or school when sick. People should also avoid touching their nose, ears, and eyes during cold and flu season.
Anyone presenting to the hospital or clinics for evaluation and treatment that has a cough and/or fever will be provided with a mask and asked to wear the mask while in public areas in the facility, including waiting rooms.