It is Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) season again and Winslow Memorial Hospital is restricting children from visiting patients to make sure they are safe.
This year, the hospital is not letting in children under the age of 13 into the facility unless they are a patient.
RSV is a virus that affects the lower respiratory tract. It affects kids more than adults due to the virus being passed by physical contact.
Dr. Miriam Yu, pediatrician, said the ban is to keep children from touching infected areas in the hospital and then touching their faces.
The ban is usually lifted in the spring when peak RSV season ends.
Symptoms of RSV resemble the flu, except difficulty breathing or wheezing accompany.
This year WMH has seen five cases of RSV, one that was transferred to a pediatric intensive care facility in Phoenix. This virus can be fatal to children if it is not caught early.
Early detection of a mild case is usually treated with rest and relaxation, but a severe case could have to be admitted into the hospital to receive fluids and oxygen, if needed.
This hospital has posted signs stating “No Children Under 13 Allowed to visit patient” on each entrance to stop parents before their kid enters the facility.
Tests to check for RSV can be performed at the hospital, but they are not free. Yu suggests if you are suffering from week-long cold and breathing difficulties, have it checked.