Equip yourself with knowledge. Ministry of Healths' website is easy enough, but I was following WHO since the beginning (long before cases started in Malaysia).
Fact: Be more worried about local transmission rather than imported cases. Once local transmission starts, the airport screening etc isn't as important.
Fact: Quarantine works. Of course not adhered to. We got exposed to a UITM quarantined person...coughing away at a kenduri. Thank God it was open space, we were minimum 1 metre away.
Fact: Co morbid factors makes it worse...our common one is: OUR CHILDREN (okay I have 2 more: a healthcare worker, an asthmatic too)
Myth: Wearing a 3 ply mask doesn't help, we should get an N95 mask. H1N1 is spread via droplets...big drops which a 3 ply mask is adequate. If you're coughing, wear a mask, and stop the spread. Well, we wore mask coz public were coughing/sneezing right into our faces. Don't believe this? Go and ask the professor.
Probably have been exposed, but always watching for symptoms. That girl from kenduri (all 3 of us probably were at risk), 140+ UMMC staff, 1 suspected in my department.... and of course at one point or another the H1N1 patients definitely come to us for xray, CT scan.
Swab? Rapid test kit?
They can't cope with throat swabs honestly. IMR is swamped. Haven't been in touch with MKAK lab people if they're doing it as well. Rapid test kit... 60-70% accuracy.... so there might be false negatives too.
You wouldn't have to wait for positive throat swab to start it. But then again, it's not like candies which you can take just to prevent the disease, I know some patients love taking antibiotics and think doctors are idiots without prescribing antibiotics.
I prescribed antibiotics for those type of people, because psychologically they are not cured without antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance- well there are other types of antibiotics. Worse case scenario... you get top notch IV antibiotics in ICU.
Tamiflu resistance has been recorded. We don't have that many antivirals compared to antibiotics. Doctors really have to exercise care in prescribing.
Doctors in hospitals are working hard to fight this. Unfortunately people are not aware of how huge this is. Ignoring quarantine, not staying home when you're sick, coughing/sneezing without covering (that's just bad manners too), invading personal spaces (don't you feel like whacking people who just insist standing too close to you).
Public health, wake up! Local transmission is here to stay, forget about imported cases. Close the clusters. Don't just 'wait and see'. This is your moment for fame (only if you do it right in handling this.... Hello, we've been rehearsing that National Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Plan for years)