The emergency hospital constructed at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in Manhattan will begin taking coronavirus patients, rather than serve as an overflow facility only for non-virus patients as previously planned, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said late Thursday.
The Army Corps of Engineers erected a 2,500-bed hospital in the convention center on Manhattan’s West Side that became operational Monday. As recently as Thursday morning, Cuomo was saying it would take non-COVID-19 patients to free up bed space in existing facilities. COVID-19 is the disease caused by the new coronavirus.
In the announcement, Cuomo said the increasingly dire demands on bed space prompted him to ask President Donald Trump for permission to treat virus patients at Javits as well, and the president consented Thursday afternoon.
“The number of COVID-positive patients has increased so dramatically that it would be beneficial to the state if Javits could accept COVID-positive patients,” Cuomo said in a written statement.
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