SANTA CLARA (CBS SF) — Health officials were preparing to set up a MASH-style unit inside the Santa Clara Convention Center with equipment sent by the federal government to be in place for an anticipated surge of patients suffering from the coronavirus.
County health officials were partnering with U.S. Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response in executing a plan to expand the number of beds to treat those with the virus.READ MORE: Oakland City Council Votes to Defund Police, Stripping More Than $17M from Department Budget
Santa Clara County has been hit the hardest by the spread of COVID-19 within the community. In the San Francisco Bay Area, so far there were 701 cases across 9 counties, with 302 of those cases being in Santa Clara. As of Sunday afternoon, there had been 13 deaths in the Bay Area from the disease, 10 of which have been in Santa Clara.
Health officials said in a press release eonce deployed the temporary Federal Medical Station will be able to care for up to 250 people.
“The FMS provides beds, supplies, and medicines for short-term, sub-acute care for individuals who do not have COVID-19, increasing capacity for acute hospital beds,” health officials said in a statement released Saturday.
During a Facebook address and question and answer period Saturday, Gov. Gavin Newsom mentioned the field medical stations were part of a plan to quickly expand hospital capacity within the state. Officials have also procured additional beds at Seton Hospital in the San Francisco area, St. Vincent Hospital in Los Angeles, an unnamed facility in Long Beach and other medical facilities in the state.READ MORE: 165 Pounds Of Fireworks Seized, Man Arrested In Oakland Crackdown
Newsom said 1,000 additional beds have been added in just the last several days.
He also thanked President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence for deploying the field units to California.
“We were incredibly pleased to get a call from the White House,” he said. “I want to thank President Trump. I want to thank Vice President Pence. We were able to get eight field medical units into the state of California. That’s going to provide a 2,000-bed capacity.”
Newsom said the equipment for the first medical station had already arrived in Riverside and was being unloaded on Saturday. Four others were en route.MORE NEWS: Menlo Park Fire Chief: Time Is Short in Search for Survivors of Florida Condo Collapse
Meanwhile, the U.S. Navy’s Mercy hospital ship was being loaded up in San Diego and expected to deploy in the Los Angeles area.