The Javits Center temporary hospital in New York City’s Manhattan borough will now be converted into a 2,500-bed emergency medical facility for COVID-19 cases to be staffed by the U.S. Army and the federal government, Trump said.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a statement on Thursday that he had made a request to the president that the Javits Center to be used to treat COVID-19 cases.
“As we all know, the growing coronavirus cases are threatening the capacity of our hospital system,” Cuomo said, adding that the number of cases has “increased so dramatically.”
He noted that the original plan for Javits was to take non-COVID patients from hospitals to free up hospital beds for COVID-19 patients.
“I thank the President for his cooperation in this pressing matter and his expeditious decision making,” Cuomo said in the statement.
Patients currently held in the Javits Center are set to be moved to the USNS Comfort ship, which has 1,000 hospital beds, The Washington Post reported. The ship arrived in Manhattan on March 30 and is currently in New York Harbor. It will remain only to be used to care for non-COVID-19 patients.
“I understand on the Comfort they don’t want to bring in COVID patients because that’s an entire ship,” Cuomo said at a press conference on Thursday. “How do you disinfect the ship afterwards? And that’s a complicated situation.”
The death toll from the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, commonly known as the novel coronavirus, jumped to 2,370 in the state on Thursday morning. There are more than 92,300 cases in the state; more than 13,000 patients with the virus are hospitalized, with about 3,000 in intensive care units, Cuomo said on Thursday.
Cuomo said on March 24 that New York state has about 53,000 hospital beds. Projections estimate that more than 76,000 beds are needed on the projected peak date of April 9.
The Javits Center and USNS Comfort are among several temporary facilities that have been constructed in New York City to cope with the increasing cases of the CCP virus.
Other temporary sites include a field hospital in Central Park, and buildings in other boroughs including in Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, and the City University of New York’s Staten Island campus.