I learned recently that Happy’s hospital was one of a growing number of hospitals nationwide banning children from entry during the pandemic H1N1 flu to protect their patients. But where is the science that says it works?
Hospitals nationwide are making up their policies as they go along.
The result? Huge variation. The large Stanford University Hospital in California on Monday barred anyone under 16 from visiting, while the small Central Vermont Hospital turned away the under-12 crowd. Other hospitals have settled on 14 or 18.
I looked up the CDC recommendations and as far as I can tell, I couldn’t find any recommendation to ban an entire population from hospital access. Here is a smallpart of the CDC’s recommendations”
Elimination of potential exposures: Eliminating the potential source of exposure ranks highest in the hierarchy of controls. Examples of interventions in this category include: taking steps to minimize outpatient visits for patients with mild influenza-like illness who do not have risk factors for complications, postponing elective visits by patients with suspected or confirmed influenza until they are no longer infectious, and denying entry to visitors who are sick.
*This blog post was originally published at A Happy Hospitalist*