Experts with Grand Strand Medical Center explain how they prepare for coronavirus cases

Local Health Experts Prepare for Coronavirus

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - Amid concerns of the coronavirus spreading across the United States, health experts are preparing in the Grand Strand.

Matt Tumbleson, director of emergency preparedness and security at Grand Strand Medical Center, said when it comes to preparing for outbreaks, the hospital makes sure they have enough equipment and supplies on hand in case they have to treat a large number of patients.

“So right now, it’s all about information and education for our staff, and our visitors and our patients," Tumbleson said. “We have signage that’s out, we put things out via social media so folks know what it is that they need to do personally to prepare.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said symptoms for coronavirus may appear two to 14 days after exposure. Those symptoms can include fever, cough and shortness of breath.

Tumbleson said the best way you can prepare is to wash your hands. If you’re sick, stay home.

Also, avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands. If you do start feeling symptoms, it’s always best to seek medical attention.

“So if someone is having symptoms of the virus, whether it be the flu or coronavirus, again they are very similar in the symptoms that they have, it’s always best to check with a medical provider," Tumbleson said. "Whether it’s your personal physician or you come into the emergency department, we’re gonna screen them, no different than we do any other time.'

If someone does have something different than the normal flu virus or some of the other infectious diseases, samples will be collected and sent to the CDC in Atlanta for testing.

On Sunday night, President Trump announced a coronavirus task force. Currently, the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States is up to 11.

The second evacuation flight is set to carry U.S. citizens out of of Wuhan, China Monday morning.

Copyright 2020 WMBF. All rights reserved.