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Archive for December, 2012

NHRMC bars young visitors to curb flu spread

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Concerns about the spread of the flu has led New Hanover Regional Medical Center to restrict visitors ages 12 and under starting tomorrow.

The hospital says Because children can have the flu and be contagious days before symptoms develop, they will not be allowed to visit or accompany a patient into NHRMC facilities unless the child is a patient. This adds NHRMC to a list of hospitals across the country taking similar steps to combat the flu.

The policy will affect all New Hanover Regional Medical Center inpatient and outpatient locations, including the Betty H. Cameron Women’s & Children’s Hospital, Surgical Pavilion, Rehabilitation Hospital, Behavioral Health Hospital, Medical Mall, Cape Fear Orthopedic Specialty Hospital, Pender Memorial Hospital, Oleander and Independence Rehabilitation Centers, NHRMC Diagnostic Centers, Nunnelee Pediatric Specialty Clinic, Outpatient Clinics, Atlantic SurgiCenter and Coastal Family Medicine.

Exceptions will be made if the patient is a family member who is critically ill or injured. Such cases must be coordinated with the patient’s caregiver.

“We understand how hard this will be for some families who want to have those children visit a new sibling or loved one in the hospital,” said Dr. Sam Spicer, NHRMC VP of Medical Affairs. “We wouldn’t take this step if it weren’t necessary to control the spread of the virus.”

The hospitals are also asking adults not to visit if they’re experiencing flu-like symptoms, including a fever with sore throat, coughing, body aches, or headache. Patients who come to the emergency departments or other care areas with those symptoms will be required to wear a mask.

In addition to restricting visitation, NHRMC will suspend programs involving young people in the hospital, including Kangaroo Kapers, a program run by volunteers for boys and girls about to become big brothers and sisters.

For more information on the flu and the visitation policy, visit NHRMC’s website.

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Insurers want changes amid low NC auto rates

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

AP Business Writer

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina has some of the lowest auto insurance rates in the country, but a group of insurers who want changes say the system is unfair to good drivers.

Companies including State Farm and Allstate will be looking to overhaul the system setting rates for nearly 7 million insured personal vehicles after the Legislature returns to work next month. Insurers say the changes will benefit good drivers.

Every auto policy includes a $17 per vehicle surcharge to operate one of the country’s largest pools providing coverage to drivers that companies don’t want.

The latest consumer cost information analyzed by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners finds North Carolina had some of the country’s lowest premiums.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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Wilmington 10 gaining national attention

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

A local effort to pardon the group known as the Wilmington 10 is now gaining national attention.

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Wilmington 10 makes ‘closing argument’ for pardons

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The surviving members of the Wilmington 10 are making one final push for pardons before Gov. Bev Perdue leaves office next week.

The living members are scheduled to deliver more than 130,000 petition signatures from their Change.org national campaign to a representative of Perdue’s State Capitol Office tomorrow at 9 a.m. This will be the last such delivery before Perdue makes her decision on whether to grant pardons to the group convicted of arson in 1971 only to have the conviction overturned years later.

Organizers say tomorrow will be the Wilmington 10’s “closing argument” to gain pardons.

A month ago, Wilmington Ten member Willie Earl Vereen led a delegation of supporters from Wilmington when he delivered more than 14,000 petition signatures from the NAACP, the Wilmington Journal newspaper and Change.org to Mark Davis, Gov. Perdue’s General Counsel, at the capitol.

This time, Dr. Benjamin Chavis, leader of the Wilmington Ten, will be joined by Wilmington Ten members Vereen, James McKoy and Marvin Patrick; family members of deceased Wilmington Ten members Anne Shepard, Jerry Jacobs, William Joe Wright and Connie Tindall; Wilmington Ten attorneys Irving Joyner and James Ferguson, and a large delegation of supporters from Wilmington, when Dr. Chavis delivers their second batch of signatures.

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Stormy weather makes for wild Wednesday morning

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

KURE BEACH, NC (WWAY) — It’s the day after Christmas, and the weather outside is frightful. Our weather team has been predicting powerful storms, and today Mother Nature proved them right.

As the early-morning storms slammed into the Pleasure Island beach head, Dennis Clouse and his family in Kure Beach kept an eye on the sky after hearing reports of severe weather.

“We saw the weather reports that there was a storm and perhaps a tornado coming up from Bald Head Island, so the family was on the lower level, but we were keeping an eye out for dark clouds and the like, and we saw all of the dark, pitch-black clouds coming up from Bald Head,” Clouse said.

While looking out of the window for a routine check of the sky, he noticed something out of the ordinary eerily floating through the sky.

“There was a dark, black cloud coming right down the middle of Ft. Fisher Blvd., and it was definitely rotating at the bottom, but the cloud wasn’t touching the ground,” Clouse said. “Everything was flying around, rotating, and transformers were sparking and all of that.”

While Clouse said the funnel never touched down, the storm’s winds were enough to flip a road sign on Snow’s Cut Bridge and rearrange the traffic pattern in a work zone.

Clouse says he counted his blessings that his family was unharmed.

“You know, it was scary, but also interesting at the same time,” Clouse said. “We’re all fascinated with the weather down here, because it changes so drastically all of the time being right on the coast.”

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