PHOENIX (Nov. 14, 2022) – In response to flu and respiratory virus season activity increasing, Banner Health has implemented visitor restrictions at all of its hospitals, effective today.
The following restrictions are being placed at all Banner Health hospitals:
- Restricting visitors if they have a fever, cough, vomiting or diarrhea.
- All visitors over the age of 2 are required to wear a mask over their nose and mouth for the duration of their visit
- Restricting visitors under the age of 13. Siblings, who do not have cold and flu symptoms, may visit a new baby on the Obstetrics unit or Pediatric unit. That child may be screened for illness by staff before being allowed to visit.
- Children, including siblings will not be allowed to visit the NICU
- Children 12 and under must be supervised by an adult at all times in public waiting areas and cafeterias.
- Visitors are highly encouraged to wash or sanitize hands frequently while at the hospital to prevent getting the flu or potentially spreading any illness.
“While we understand visitor restrictions can be difficult, they are necessary to prevent the spread of flu and other respiratory viruses within our hospitals. We appreciate everyone’s help in keeping our patients safe,’’ said Joan Ivaska, senior director of infection prevention at Banner Health.
RSV, a seasonal respiratory virus common among young children, has arrived earlier than normal in Arizona with cases up more than 300 percent compared to a typical season.
Public health experts are also worried about this year’s flu season being more severe than normal.
Banner Health encourages everyone over the age of six months to receive the flu vaccine to protect themselves and others from influenza. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for protection to set in. Flu shots are available at Banner Health Urgent Care; most insurers will cover the vaccination.
About Banner Health
Banner Health is one of the largest, secular nonprofit health care systems in the country. In addition to 30 acute-care hospitals, Banner also operates an academic medicine division, Banner – University Medicine, and Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center, a partnership with one of the world’s leading cancer programs, MD Anderson Cancer Center. Banner’s array of services includes a health insurance division, employed physician groups, outpatient surgery centers, urgent care locations, home care and hospice services, retail pharmacies, stand-alone imaging centers, physical therapy and rehabilitation, behavioral health services, a research division and a nursing registry. To make health care easier, 100% of Banner-employed doctors are available for virtual visits, and Banner operates a free 24/7 nurse line for health questions or concerns. Patients may also reserve spots at Banner Urgent Care locations and can book appointments online with many Banner-employed doctors. Headquartered in Arizona, Banner Health also has locations in California, Colorado, Nebraska, Nevada and Wyoming. For more information, visit bannerhealth.com.