PCMH: We're Ready For Swine Flu

The Pandemic Task Force at Pitt County Memorial Hospital met Sunday night to talk about swine flu.

The virus has killed as many as 86 people in Mexico. It hasn't been fatal in the U.S., but there are at least 20 cases confirmed in five states and the government has declared a public health emergency.

Keith Ramsey iss the Medical Director for Infection Control at PCMH as well as a professor at the Brody School of Medicine.

Ramsey says there have been no cases of the Swine Flu in North Carolina but he could see it coming our way. He says right now we are at a pandemic level 3.

"We've had students come back from spring break that may bring back the virus with them," Ramsey said. "We also have a lot of migrant workers who could have brought the virus back with them. So it's possible we would have some cases show up here in Greenville."

People who show up at PCMH emergency rooms should expect to see signs in English and Spanish explaining to them that they need to tell a hospital staffer if they are sick and have been to Mexico.

"Anyone who comes into the ER who has a cough or fever, flu-like symptoms we will put a mask on them until they can be evaluated by physicians," Reed said.

If you can't make it to the doctor, Ramsey advises people to practice good hygiene and don't forget to wash your hands.

There is some good news, and that's about Tamiflu. "The drug we have used for the last 5 years is Tamiflu. It appears to be effective against this particular strain."

Ramsey says there are still flu shots available for those that want them.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Anonymous on Apr 27, 2009 at 03:23 PM
    Flu shots do not guarantee immunity. The effectiveness in preventing influenza often ranges from 30-40 percent. Not very encouraging considering the potential health dangers you may be opening yourself up to down the road by allowing the vaccine's toxic agents into your body. vaccine's toxic agents Mercury/aluminum, Formaldehyde.... If the public were fully informed and aware of all the ingredients that went into the flu shot, there would be a mass exodus away from it. Full article: http://proliberty.com/observer/20041105.htm
  • by Whoa Location: JH Roses on Apr 27, 2009 at 10:49 AM
    Swine Flu and the common cold are caused by two very different things. We can get vaccines for the flu and we can't for the cold, so maybe they are ready. Besides there probably won't be a major outbreak in Greenville as long as anyone who is sick gets help right away.
  • by Dave Location: Your dreams on Apr 27, 2009 at 10:23 AM
    PCMH isn't ready for the common cold, so how would they be ready for the swine flu?
  • by steve on Apr 27, 2009 at 09:35 AM
    If you beleive what PCMH said, you will beleive anything. Right pcmh and migrant worker with out a green card tell someone at PCMH that they are sick, oh get real on that one. They know they would be shipped back.
  • by Jeff on Apr 27, 2009 at 09:30 AM
    And how long will the wait be in the ER to be seen? Just go to your regular doctor, there will be lots of the usual hang nail cases ahead of you at PCMH.
  • by reader Location: nc on Apr 27, 2009 at 08:58 AM
    How can they say they're ready for the swine flu, when they can't even handle the regular flu virus? They're like every other hospital: trying to make themselves look good. They DON'T know how ready they actually are until they are actually faced with the problem.
  • by Bob on Apr 27, 2009 at 05:56 AM
    PCMH would say they are ready for an outbreak of Anthrax to get good press.
  • by Dave Location: The Dark Side on Apr 27, 2009 at 05:31 AM
    Ready for the swine flu huh? Sorry PCMH, but NOBODY is ready for this epidemic.
  • by Anonymous on Apr 27, 2009 at 04:47 AM
    On the news all the health directors are telling people if you are sick "stay home", don't go out and expose other people. Do they have people set up to make home visits? If these people come into Emergency everyone there will be exposed mask or no mask, same with doctor's offices.
  • by Carm Location: NC on Apr 27, 2009 at 04:25 AM
    To say that we are Ready for swine flu, is a misleading comment. There might be an outbreak to big for them to handle.. Never know. Scarey as it is its not immune to other states, or countries. Eastern NC is known for many mexico workers who travel here to there many times per month. I pray that we do not get a single case, but I can tell you now I am not ready for the flu no matter what medicines they prepare.
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