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updated: 1/11/2013 4:31 PM

Illinois hospitals fight flu with visitor limits

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Associated Press

Illinois hospitals are being asked to enforce restrictions on visitors because of the severe flu outbreak that's increasing the risk of infection throughout the state.

The Illinois Department of Public Health advised hospitals Friday to temporarily bar visitors younger than 18 and to limit visitors to two per patient at one time.

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Other recommendations include requesting people with coughs and other symptoms not visit hospital patients.

Many hospitals already were limiting visitors because of the flu before the letter from the health department.

The Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council polled its member hospitals earlier this week and found that 20 percent were already altering their visitor policies.

Rob Humrickhouse of the Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council says if people feel sick they shouldn't visit somebody in the hospital. He says: "Stay home."

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