HONESDALE — Wayne Memorial Hospital is asking all visitors with cold or respiratory symptoms to please refrain from visiting patients at the hospital.

Due to an uptick in influenza and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), the hospital is also asking that children 12 and under not visit its maternity unit, New Beginnings, at this time.

“We have seen an elevation in patients experiencing symptoms coming to our Emergency Department, as well as among our staff,” said Kay Daley, RN/Infection Control.

“This has prompted us to take extra precautions to safeguard our entire community of patients, visitors and staff.”

Daley asked that people who find themselves coughing, sneezing, suffering a runny nose or running a fever please consider calling a patient at the hospital instead of visiting them in person.

According to the latest reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu is widespread among 30 states.

While the proportion of outpatient visits for the disease decreased slightly in the first week of January, visits remain above the national baseline.

The incidence of influenza A was elevated in Region 3, which includes Pennsylvania.

Daley encourages everyone to practice good respiratory hygiene, such as not coughing into your hands but into a tissue which you immediately discard. Frequent hand washing to deter the spread of a virus is also recommended.

Sanitizing stations for staff and visitors are located throughout Wayne Memorial Hospital.