Banner Health News Center  

Sterling Regional MedCenter plans visitation restrictions for flu season


STERLING, Colo. (Jan. 16, 2013) — With the number of cases of influenza on the rise in Colorado, Sterling Regional MedCenter is enacting measures to protect patients and staff.

Visitors under the age of 12 are restricted from visiting patient care areas at the hospital. Children under 12 are most likely to carry and spread influenza. According to the Centers for Disease Control, one of the best ways to protect patients, hospital staff and other visitors is to implement visitation restrictions for children.

Patient care areas include patient rooms, medical imaging, speech, occupational, and physical therapy, and outpatient services. Children may be in the public areas as long as they are accompanied by an adult. Public areas are waiting areas, the lobby, cafeteria and Gift Shop.

Exceptions will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please contact Infection Preventionist Katie Ruff, (970) 521-3107, Phylis Helgoth, (970) 521-3180 or the administrative rep on duty for the hospital. Hospital leaders will announce when the restrictions are no longer necessary.

The flu is a contagious disease and contributes to more than 36,000 preventable deaths annually in the United States. Young children, people 65 years of age or older, pregnant women and people with conditions such as heart, lung or kidney disease or a weakened immune system are at high risk for getting the flu, which can cause fever and pneumonia and make existing medical conditions worse.

Sterling Regional MedCenter has provided outstanding medical care to residents of northeastern Colorado and the surrounding area since 1938. We are a 25-bed acute-care hospital with state-of-the-art technology, a full range of health care services, and a staff dedicated to providing our patients with excellent care. We are also home to the David Walsh Cancer Center, which offers an unprecedented level of cancer care to northeastern Colorado residents.

Headquartered in Phoenix, Banner Health is one of the largest, nonprofit healthcare systems in the country. The system owns or manages 23 acute-care hospitals, long-term care centers, outpatient surgery centers and an array of other services including family clinics, home care and hospice services, and a nursing registry. Banner Health is in seven states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Nebraska, Nevada and Wyoming. To learn more about Banner Health, please visit


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