Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center is taking extra precautions this flu season due to the nationwide epidemic.
Starting last year the hospital has required its 6-thousand plus employees to get a flu shot. That requirement is continuing, however about a hundred employees have chosen not to get the vaccine for either medical or religious reason.
For those employees who have not been vaccinated, the medical center is requiring that they where a medical mask if they enter a patient's room or come within 3 feet of a patient. The new rules are one part of the facility's recently activated incident command procedures.
"This doesn't mean that things are out of control -- just the opposite -- things are very much under control. We have a robust plan and put into place actions that are just necessary to make sure that we are not transmitting the flu amongst each other or our patients," said DHMC's Dr. Robert McLellan.
Hospital officials said they have seen more case of the flu so far this year, but are experiencing only moderate levels compared to other states, like New York, that have declared public health emergencies.
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