- Associated Press - Thursday, January 11, 2018

DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) - Some eastern Iowa hospitals have announced restrictions on visitation in the wake of a vicious flu season that has strained hospitals across the country.

Mercy Medical Center in Dubuque and Dyersville and UnityPoint Health Finley Hospital in Dubuque have announced patient visitation restrictions starting Friday because of the respiratory virus.

All children under 14 and any people showing symptoms of the flu are asked not to visit hospitalized patients until further notice.

The flu is a contagious virus and it can cause fever, headaches, cough, sore throat, body aches and tiredness and can be fatal, particularly in the very young and old and those with compromised immune systems.

Iowa officials reported last week a total of six flu-related deaths in Iowa since October.

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