Hospital limits visits from youth

And as far as preparing for novel H1N1 influenza or swine flue, AMC is taking steps similar to those taken by most area institutions.

"We're actively approaching the situation," Riccio said. "We're treating it as not if, but when."

"We're educating staff about seasonal flu vaccines as well as H1N1," he said. "We're looking at potential scenarios if a lot of people come to the emergency room, how are we going to handle things like that? It's really a massive undertaking, but certainly the preparation that's under way I think will help us in the long run and we'll be able to proactively deal with the situation."

Most area schools and colleges have action and prevention plans in place for the inevitable arrival of swine flu in the Tri-Lakes. And for seasonal flu, officials from the Franklin and Essex County Public Health Departments have scheduled vaccination clinics for September and October.

H1N1 vaccines are expected to be available by early next month.

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