Le Bonheur sets up tent to deal with Swine Flu patients - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Le Bonheur sets up tent to deal with Swine Flu patients

Children who are under age five, or who have other underlying health conditions, will go straight to the emergency room. Children who are under age five, or who have other underlying health conditions, will go straight to the emergency room.

By Jamel Major - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Concerned about her two children, Donna Miller brought them to the emergency room at Le Bonheur Children's Medical Center Friday to be checked out.

"I don't want them to have the Swine Flu, so we just came down here to make sure they don't have it," she said.

Recently, the hospital's emergency room has been inundated with patients.  This time of year, doctors normally see 160 to 180 children per day with flu-like symptoms. Currently, the hospital is seeing around 350 a day.
 
"We're seeing a lot of people coming to the ER who are sick, but not emergencies," Dr. William May said.
 
By setting up a huge tent outside the hospital's emergency room, doctors say things will be a bit easier.

"We can significantly reduce the wait time for people and make it a little bit more way to deliver care," May said.

Children who are fiver or older with flu-like symptoms will be screened and treated inside the tent.  Children who are under age five, or who have other underlying health conditions, will go straight to the emergency room.
 
"These are kids who we think are at high risk," May said.
 
Meanwhile, doctors say preventing the spread of the virus is key.  They're urging parents to stay calm and take the necessary precautions.

"Hand washing...older kids can be reminded to cover their face when they cough," May said.
 
Once the children go home, hospital staff will be on hand to call their parents within 24 to 48 hours to check on them.  Officials at Le Bonheur are not sure how long the tent will be up, but they are willing to keep it there as long as it's necessary.

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