I am in medicine. This is a meeting I attended today about the Pandemic Influenza Response Plan for the county I work in. The meeting was with South Carolina DHEC,hospital officials,County Sherrifs,EMS and Fire,RedCross and even a General with the SC Air National Guard. The short and sweet version of what they said was: 1. There is no vaccine. It wont be available until AFTER the outbreak starts and will take a minimum of 6 months for it to be ready. 2. They suspect the Bird Flu will come in 3 waves. Each wave lasting approx 8 weeks. Overall duration to be 8 months and longer. 3. The main killer will be chest congestion and pnuemonia. There are only 12 ventilators in this county and they suspect there to be 10,000 people sick. The most that could be hospitalized is about 250. Needless to say there will not be enough to go around. 4. Quarantine will be the only way to stop it. Whether it be your home or community or town or state. I asked specifically how long did they expect it to last. They said it would be a minimum of 1 year. 5. I asked the head of Emergency Operations, "After the outbreak is public there will be a panic. What will you do when you have 10,000 people trying to get into the hospitals and such." He looked at me and said "We will shoot them." and he walked away. 6. I asked will medicine be available and was told that they will "Buy what we need when that time comes." Needless to say, you will be on your own to survive this. Everyone needs to stock up on cold medicine especially for "congestion".You will need stuff like Robitussin, Mucinex, Sudafed, Dimetap, aspirin, tylenol, ibuprophen and children cough and cold medicine too. Get some Vicks Vapo-rub or some such as well. You will only have what you have bought and stored before hand. You wont get outside help. Don't forget to stock up on medicine that you take on a regular basis. Go see your family Dr. and get your Pnuemonia and flu vaccine. They may help. They expect over 2 million to die in the US. They also said that the young and old will be the hardest hit. This is on top of any other preps you have.