Based on surveillance data as of 12/06/2019, statewide influenza activity is characterized as widespread; the flu season has started earlier this year than in recent years.

Vaccination and good infection control practices remain the best prevention strategies.

As a reminder:

    • Staff with cough and/or sore throat or fever greater than or equal to 100.4°F/38°C° should not come to work.
    • Staff may return to work only when afebrile for 24 hours after stopping fever-reducing medication.
    • All unvaccinated staff must wear a surgical style mask in patient care areas.
    • Influenza vaccine remains available for all staff.
    • Visitors should be restricted from coming into the hospital if they have a communicable infection or disease.
    • In outpatient settings: Mask all coughing visitors accompanying patients.
    • In the ED (including Urgent Care and Walk-in clinic) and ITA waiting areas: Mask ALL visitors.
    • Visitors must comply with isolation procedures when a patient is in isolation.
    • Visitors should check in at their patient unit’s nurse’s station prior to seeing their patient.
    • Visitors must be educated to perform hand hygiene prior to direct contact with the patient and before leaving the patient’s room.
    • Place patients with suspected or confirmed influenza on Droplet Precautions.
    • Practice respiratory hygiene/etiquette. Mask all coughing patients and visitors.
    • Have tissues available in all waiting areas in the clinics and hospital.
    • Prominently display hand sanitizer at check-in areas and educate patients and visitors to perform hand hygiene.
    • For patients with Influenza-Like Illness (ILI) who present to the ED, the rapid influenza test should be ordered. It provides results very quickly. If patient requires admission, place into droplet isolation precautions until results are available. If influenza positive, continue droplet isolation. 
    • If rapid influenza test is not available, consider empiric treatment with Tamiflu. 
    • Patients with positive influenza test requiring admission should be treated with Tamiflu x 5 days (even if symptoms have persisted >48 hours).  Isolate (Droplet Precautions) “for 7 days after onset of symptoms or until 24 hours after resolution of fever and respiratory symptoms whichever is longer and no longer receiving antiviral therapy.”
  • For questions, please contact the Infection Prevention & Control Department at (650) 725-1106.