By TIMOTHY COX & LANCE MIHM
Some area nursing homes are taking special precautions to protect
residents from the flu, and school district officials are hoping
to get through this week to Christmas break without any large
The Gardens at Celina, 1301 Myers Road, is limiting visits to
emergency situations only, a spokeswoman said this morning.
Signs have been posted advising visitors not to enter unless
the visit is absolutely necessary. The restrictions come at
a difficult time with the holidays coming up, but are necessary
to protect residents from becoming ill, the spokeswoman said.
Gardens at Celina officials could not estimate how long the
restrictions will remain in place.
Valley Nursing Home employees in St. Marys are advising people
who may be sick not to visit any of the residents there.
“We’ve been very fortunate so far,” said Amy
Kentner at Valley Nursing Home in St. Marys. “We are putting
up signs asking relatives to refrain from entering if they have
the flu. If anyone is showing flu-like symptoms, we are notifying
the doctor immediately.”
Administrators at the Laurels of Shane Hill in Rockford and
the Gardens at St. Henry reported no problems with the flu.
There are no visitation restrictions at either place.
New Bremen Local Schools Superintendent Larry Smith said one
student has been confirmed with Type A flu.
“We are just hoping to get through the week and get the
kids out for Christmas vacation,” Smith said.
St. Marys City Schools reported 236 students (9.6 percent) absent
Sally Bowman, the Mercer County Health Department’s nursing
director, said none of the schools in the county have reported
any serious problems caused by the flu. As of this morning,
Bowman said she was still assessing whether the flu outbreak
has worsened or improved during the past week or so.
As for flu vaccine, Bowman said she still does not know if any
more will be available this winter.
“At this time, I have no indication we will be getting
any more for the rest of the season,” Bowman said.
At the Auglaize County Health Department, 500 more doses of
the flu vaccine arrived this morning and already were being
administered, director of nursing Deb Scheer said.