As the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread, New York state is mobilizing to build eight temporary hospitals to care for the surge of patients, including a 1,000-bed makeshift hospital at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in Manhattan built with the help of the New York National Guard and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
New York has emerged as the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in the United States with more than 46,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases state-wide, of which more than 25,000 are from New York City. Those numbers amount to a 7,300 increase in confirmed cases in the past 24 hours. In total, 603 New Yorkers have died from the virus as of Friday evening.
On Friday, there were 6,481 patients hospitalized in New York state, an increase of 20 percent from the numbers the day before and double what it had been three days earlier. Of those patients, 1,583 were in intensive care and over 2,000 had been discharged, the New York Times reports.
The Times also reports, that over “62,000 medical workers, many of them retired, have volunteered to help stem the crisis. Almost 10,100 mental health professionals have also stepped forward to treat New Yorkers coping with the effects of being isolated.”
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo called for 4,000 more temporary beds across New York City, where the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center has already been converted into a hospital.
“This is going to be weeks and weeks and weeks,” Cuomo told members of the National Guard working at the Javits Center. “This is going to be a long day, and it’s going to be a hard day, and it’s going to be an ugly day, and it’s going to be a sad day.”
Cuomo said the state was seeking to build another four temporary makeshift hospitals to add an additional 4,000 beds, which he called part of a plan B to try to make up for a shortage of medical resources. Cuomo said he was going to ask the White House to grant the request to build those additional resources.
Cuomo reiterated the state’s goal to get to 140,000 hospital bed capacity from the current 53,000 available.
He said that hospitalizations are increasing at a rate at which they double every four days, compared with three days last week. He said he believed there was a correlation between social distancing measures and the improved rate.
The U.S. has surpassed 101,000 confirmed cases on Friday, according to a count kept by Johns Hopkins University. As of Friday afternoon, there were over 1,581 deaths in the U.S. from the coronavirus.
Dr. John Brooks of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned Americans remained “in the acceleration phase” of the pandemic and that all corners of the country were at risk.
“There is no geographic part of the United States that is spared from this,” he said.
In addition to New York, states like California, Washington, Michigan, and Louisiana have emerged as emerging hot spots for the pandemic of the virus that originated in Wuhan, China.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Rebecca Mansour is Senior Editor-at-Large for Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Tonight on SiriusXM Patriot channel 125, which broadcasts live weeknights from 9:00 p.m. to midnight Eastern (6-9:00 p.m. Pacific). Follow her on Twitter at @RAMansour.