NBC features LeBonheur's Swine Flu tent on national newscasts - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

NBC features LeBonheur's Swine Flu tent on national newscasts

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Swine Flu cases in Memphis made national news Monday as NBC featured the special H1N1 emergency tent at LeBonheur Children's Medical Center. Swine Flu cases in Memphis made national news Monday as NBC featured the special H1N1 emergency tent at LeBonheur Children's Medical Center.

By Jamel Major - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Swine Flu cases in Memphis made national news Monday as NBC featured the special H1N1 emergency tent at LeBonheur Children's Medical Center.

"Memphis is an interesting place for the Swine Flu story because you're one of the few places in the country where the hospital has set up a pre-screening or triage area," NBC News producer Al Henkel said.

For its Monday reports, the network's cameras received a rare look inside LeBonheur's flu tent.

"You go in and you're given a mask to keep you from infecting somebody if you do get the flu," Henkel said. "They do an assessment of your vital signs."

LeBonheur placed the flu tent outside its emergency room on September 11, after the hospital began receiving an influx of patients showing up with flu-like symptoms.  Since then, doctors say they've had around 800 people come through it.

"ER doctors told us yesterday they don't have room to stack people in the hallway and for the numbers they were getting, so it's a good idea to get them out of the hospital so they don't infect anybody else," Henkel said.

While LeBonheur continues to see more than double the number of patients of a normal flu season, NBC is in Memphis producing stories for the Today Show, NBC Nightly News and MSNBC.  Henkel said NBC's goal is to show the impact H1N1 is having here at home and across the country.

"The hospitals here in the city of Memphis are doing a good job of preventive care, trying to stop an epidemic before it happens," he said.

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