Aitkin hospital announces visitor restrictions

In the past week, Riverwood Healthcare Center has seen a surge in patients coming into its clinics, emergency department and hospital for respiratory infections and influenza-like illness.

On Dec. 23, Riverwood posted hospital visitor restrictions and advises local residents to NOT visit hospitalized patients if they have: 1) flu-like symptoms of a fever, cough or sore throat, vomiting or diarrhea; 2) a sick family member; or 3) recently been in contact with someone with flu-like symptoms. Even if you don’t have any symptoms, you should be aware that there are hospitalized patients with infectious flu illness that can put you at risk for getting sick and spreading illness to others.

Those being treated for a respiratory illness or have flu-like-symptoms should:

  • Obtain a mask at a Riverwood clinic or the hospital reception desk and wear it until you leave the facility.
  • Cough or sneeze into your sleeve or a disposable tissue, if not wearing a mask, and use the antimicrobial hand sanitizer available in the lobbies.
  • Sit at least 6 feet away from others to avoid exposing them.

Not all patients who are examined will receive an antiviral medication for influenza. Your health care provider will determine if the medication would be effective for you. Antibiotics are not helpful for treating a viral infection and may lead to more serious problems due to antibiotic-resistant infections.

The Minnesota Department of Health recommends staying at home and using a flu and cold care kit to prevent transmitting influenza to other people.

Magazines have been removed temporarily from Riverwood clinic lobbies until further notice to help prevent the spread of flu illness.

If you have not already received a flu shot this season, it is not too late to get the influenza vaccine. To schedule a flu shot nurse appointment, call Riverwood clinic’s appointment line at (218) 927-2157 or toll-free at (888) 270-1882.