MUSC disease expert: "Planning is priceless"

With two probable cases in Newberry, South Carolina’s medical experts are preparing for the spread of the swine flu across the state.
“The swine flu outbreak is something that has everyone in health care very much concerned because of its rapid onset that we have seen how quickly this virus has emerged in Mexico and has begun to spread across the world,” says Medical University of South Carolina’s Dr. Mike Schmidt.
Schmidt says most hospitals and doctor’s offices across the state are following usual flu protocols, such as separating patients with symptoms and providing masks and hand-washing stations. Schmidt says swine flu victims experience very similar symptoms as someone with  “normal” influenza.
 He says although they are concerned, they are also ready.
“The most important thing to appreciate is that South Carolina has been preparing this for quite sometime and planning is priceless. So, our hospitals and medical staff have been made aware of this, they have been following this closely and preparing for the unthinkable and it appears that the unthinkable is beginning to happen,” says Dr. Schmidt.
Schmidt says it is not a matter of “if” the virus spreads to the state, but “when.”