Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin ban on visits from kids impacts local families

NOW: Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin ban on visits from kids impacts local families

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Children's Hospital of Wisconsin is temporarily restricting visitors to limit flu exposure at both their Milwaukee and Fox Valley hospitals, but some patient families say the temporary policy change is making their difficult situation, even tougher.

As of Thursday, February 8, no person under the age of 12 is allowed in any inpatient care area. The policy does NOT include clinic appointments.

One Walworth County family has two daughters with complex medical issues and head to Children's Hospital of Wisconsin often. Parents Amanda and Brent Upton believe the change in policy is a good idea.

"I'm sure it was a hard decision for them to make, but I know it's one that was made with the thought of keeping kids like mine safe," Amanda Upton said.

The Upton's daughters, Jillian and Lydia, need to be on oxygen and feeding tubes 24/7.

"Their muscles don't process energy and oxygen the way that they should," Brent Upton said.

Because of their daughter’s complex medial issues, the girls cannot get the flu.

"For our kids with already compromised lungs, it could really be devastating for them," Amanda Upton said.

While the Upton’s think the temporary policy change restricting children is a good idea, they said it makes their situation even harder. Normally when one of the Upton kids is admitted, Amanda stays with both of them at the hospital, even when they're not both sick. That's in order to let Brent head to work, but now they had to come up with a new plan

"Talked with our family and friends and said if one of our kids goes into the hospital we are going to need someone to spend time with the other child," Amanda Upton said.

Amanda said there are families at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin  that are trying to handle the change and is looking for the community to help with childcare. 

The hospital says the restriction will be lifted as soon as possible and will be assessed on a regular basis as new information about the flu season becomes available.

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