Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an Executive Order on Monday allowing New York to increase hospital surge capacity to prepare for an expected deluge of patients with the novel coronavirus. […]
The state will organize the National Guard and work with building unions and private developers to find existing facilities — such as college dormitories and former nursing homes — that can be converted to backup medical facilities, Cuomo said in a release.
Job 1 right now is the construction of more hospital capacity.
Here’s my question: Who’s going to staff those hospitals? And where is the equipment going to come from?
I’m not trying to be negative or panicky. Patients on ventilators require a large staff of medical professionals to monitor and treat them. Has anyone seen a plan to, say, take half of the dermatologists, orthopedic surgeons and plastic surgeons in a city and give them a refresher on intensive care? How about recruiting large numbers of young people for intensive paramedic training (assessment, starting IVs, etc.) ? If we had a functional President, I imagine that he or she would be talking to all the US-based medical equipment companies and supply companies to make sure they have everything they need to manufacturer mass quantities of a targeted set of equipment and supplies, with the military helping if necessary.
We have the resources to do almost anything, but has anyone seen more than a statement that we need more beds?
Update: Cuomo just announced that Trump will send the USNS Comfort, one of the two Mercy-class hospital ships operated by the Navy, to New York City. That’s 1,000 beds.