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Influenza Increase Spark Restrictions

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Allen County health officials are establishing visitation restrictions at local healthcare facilities and hospitals due to a recent flu outbreak.

Health commissioner Deb McMahan says an aggressive strain of influenza A -- also classified as H3N2 -- poses severe risk to both very young and elderly populations, as well as patients with respiratory or heart problems.

Some visitation recommendations insist anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms wearing a mask if they have an appointment, even in a waiting room; no visitors of any age with symptoms and no visitors under the age of 18; and limiting visits to two “essential adults” per patient.

Allen County health officials have previously issued visitation restrictions during times of high flu activity, doing so as recently as last year. Parkview Health and Lutheran Health Network have partnered with the health department in implementing the restrictions.

In order to slow or stop the spread of the virus, the health department recommends anyone who hasn’t been vaccinated to do so, stay home if you are sick, regularly wash your hands and minimize the spread of germs by covering coughs and sneezes.

Residents will be informed as soon as the restrictions are lifted.