HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - As flu season impacts the Hampton Roads area, local hospitals are asking all patients and visitors to wear masks when they visit medical facilities.
The recommendation extends to outpatient services, and people who have already had a flu vaccine are still asked to wear masks. While the flu vaccine is the best prevention available, it is not 100 percent effective, and masking provides a layer of protection from the disease.
In a joint statement, Hampton Roads hospitals and medical facilities said that data suggests an infected person can spread the virus for as long as 24 hours before symptoms appear, and masking helps protect patients, visitors and staff from exposure.
In addition, individuals experiencing flu-like symptoms are asked to refrain from visiting patients at area hospitals.
The recommendation to wear a mask when entering healthcare facilities will remain in effect during the flu season for as long as the disease is at widespread levels.
Here is a list of participating practices:
- Bon Secours DePaul Medical Center
- Bon Secours Mary Immaculate Hospital
- Bon Secours Maryview Medical Center
- Bon Secours Health Center at Harbour View
- Chesapeake Regional Healthcare
- Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters
- Naval Medical Center Portsmouth
- Riverside Doctors’ Hospital
- Riverside Regional Medical Center
- Riverside Shore Memorial Hospital
- Riverside Tappahannock Hospital
- Riverside Walter Reed Hospital
- Sentara Albemarle Medical Center
- Sentara CarePlex Hospital and Orthopedic Hospital at Sentara CarePlex
- Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital
- Sentara Leigh Hospital
- Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital
- Sentara Martha Jefferson Emergency Department at Proffit Road
- Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Sentara Heart Hospital
- Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center
- Sentara Obici Hospital
- Sentara Princess Anne Hospital
- Sentara RMH Medical Center
- Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital
- Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center
- Sentara Freestanding Emergency Departments at BelleHarbour, Port Warwick, Independence and Lake Ridge