Skip to Content
Rush-Copley Medical Group
Home > Health & Fitness > Healthwise > Hospital Isolation Rooms
If your doctor wants you to be kept away, or isolated, from other
patients while you receive medical care, you may be in a special hospital room, called an isolation room, to keep you separate from other people.
This may be done because you have an
infection that can be spread to others or because your condition makes you more easily infected by others.
Sometimes isolation rooms use negative air pressure. This helps
prevent airborne diseases (such as tuberculosis or flu) from escaping the room and
infecting other people. A machine pulls air into the room. Then it filters the air before
moving it outside.
In a negative air pressure room, you may be able to feel air
being sucked into the room under a closed door or through a slightly opened
In other cases, such as when a person has a weakened immune
system, positive air pressure may be used. Clean, filtered air is constantly
pumped into the room. This is done to keep contagious diseases out of the
With this type of isolation room, you may be able to feel air blowing out of the room under a closed door.
Other Works Consulted
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2007). Guideline for isolation precautions: Preventing transmission of infectious agents in healthcare settings 2007. Available online:
Current as of:
December 18, 2012
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.
To learn more, visit Healthwise.org
© 1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Retrieving newsletters from the Web service...
Sorry, the newsletter Web service is unavailable at this time.
You have signed up for the selected newsletters.
© Copyright 2015 Rush-Copley Medical Center • 2000 Ogden Avenue; Aurora, IL 60504
Main: 630-978-6200 • Physician Referral & Information: 630-978-6700 or 866-4COPLEY (866-426-7539)