Baystate Health has put new visitor policies in place at its three hospitals in Springfield, Greenfield and Ware. Patients can have no more than 2 visitors at a time and none under the age of 14. Patients are asked to come alone to doctor’s appointments. Dr. Sarah Haessler, an infectious disease specialist at Baystate said the last time these precautions were taken was during the flu pandemic in 2009.
The city of Boston declared a public health emergency and is working to set up free flu vaccination clinics. Experts say the flu season has arrived earlier and is harsher than normal.