INDIANAPOLIS – With the increasing activity of respiratory viruses such as flu, COVID-19 and RSV, Franciscan Health hospitals in Indianapolis, Mooresville and Carmel are implementing new visitation restrictions.

These changes only affect inpatient areas and do not apply to outpatient departments. The following policy goes into effect Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023:

  • Visitors must be at least 18 years of age.
  • If visiting a patient who has respiratory symptoms, visitors are asked to keep a mask on and do not visit the cafeteria, coffee & gift shops or waiting rooms.
  • Those having symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including, but not limited to cough, fever, shortness of breath, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, diarrhea, tiredness, headache and vomiting, will not be allowed to visit.
  • Visitors should continue to practice good hand hygiene.
  • Only two visitors per patient are allowed to visit at a time (excluding clergy who are part of the care team).
  • Visitation hours are from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The new policies are being implemented with input from Franciscan Alliance leadership and in accordance with guidelines from the CDC, Indiana Department of Health and Marion County Health Department.

The rate of influenza-like illness (ILI) reported in patients at Marion County emergency departments this year has been 4.63%, the second-highest year for cases. ILI is defined as a temperature of 100°F or greater with a cough and/or sore throat.

Franciscan Health urges everyone age 6 months and older to get a flu shot as the first and most important step for protecting against flu viruses.