Hospital institutes restrictions for flu season

The flu is spreading around central Indiana, and two local hospitals are restricting visitors to protect patients.

Community Hospital South and Franciscan St. Francis South Indianapolis will start visitor restrictions Monday, which will remain in effect until staff decide to lift them. Visitors will be restricted to immediate family, spouses, significant others and spiritual advisers. People with fever of flu-like symptoms and those younger than 18 years old will not be allowed to visit.

Johnson Memorial Hospital in Franklin is not limiting visitors, director of business development Bill Oakes said.

The restrictions were suggested by Marion County Health Department Director Dr. Virginia Caine for Indianapolis hospitals.

“These restrictions serve as a necessary step to help protect patients, visitors and hospital staff from exposure to the flu virus,” Caine said in a news release.