On Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the first 1000-bed temporary hospital at the Jacobs K. Javits Convention Center has been completed. With over 30,000 cases of COVID-19 in New York City and 59,000 statewide, Governor Cuomo stated last week that he hopes to open a 1,000-plus bed facility in each of New York City’s five boroughs, and Westchester, Rockland, Nassau, and Suffolk counties, in addition to the four that were approved previously for the Javits Center, SUNY Stony Brook, SUNY Westbury, and Westchester County Center.

Cuomo arriving at Temporary hospital at Javits CenterPhoto from the Office of Governor Cuomo

Initially, the Javits Center temporary hospital was intended to serve COVID-19 patients, but then it was slated to serve as overflow for non-coronavirus patients coming from New York City hospitals. [Update: As of April 2nd, it was announced that there will be 2,500 beds for coronavirus patients — something Governor Cuomo requested to President Trump.] The USNS Comfort, the Navy ship that is expected to arrive today to New York Harbor will be similar, but focusing on non-coronavirus surgery patients.

Cuomo press conference at Temporary hospital at Javits CenterPhoto from the Office of Governor Cuomo

The temporary hospital at the Javits Center has four sub-hospitals, each with 250-beds. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Health and Human Services Department supplied the equipment, while the National Guard, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Javits Center staff were involved in the construction. Each bed is separated by white temporary walls and a front curtain. Inside, there is a bed, a foldable chair, side table with a plant, lamp, humidifier, trash can, and a red bag of medical supplies. The layout, at least in the area shown in the press conference, are two rows of eight back to back for a large unit of sixteen bed stalls.

“This is an amazing accomplishment. It’s transformative in just one week. The Javits Center looks entirely different and this is a place that’s literally going to save lives,” Governor Cuomo said in a press conference on Friday. Cuomo praised National Guard Major General Patrick Murphy, who was key to the construction of the Javits Center temporary hospital. Cuomo said “I’ve been with the general for nine years. I’ve seen him in hurricanes, and Superstorm Sandy, and floods, and everything mother nature could throw could throw at us. So, I’ve seen him in attempted terrorist attacks. There is no one better. He leads from the front.”

Cuomo noted in the press conference, “I want to thank the Javits staff which has really stepped up and I want to thank our National Guard, because you are the best of us. You are the best of us. And whenever we call on you, you are there and what you did in this facility in one week creating a hospital is just incredible. I don’t know how you did it. Now, you did such a good job that I’m asking for four more from the President.”

Temporary hospital at Javits CenterPhoto from the Office of Governor Cuomo

Governor Cuomo announced that four new sites for temporary hospitals have been toured and identified by the Army Corps of Engineers: The New York Expo Center in the Bronx, CUNY Staten Island, the Aqueduct Racetrack facility in Queens, and the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal. College dormitories, hotels, and nursing homes have also been considered, including City College, Marriott Brooklyn Bridge Hotel, and a Brooklyn Center nursing home.

Cuomo applauding staff at Temporary hospital at Javits CenterPhoto from the Office of Governor Cuomo

Cuomo at press conference at Temporary hospital at Javits CenterPhoto from the Office of Governor Cuomo

Soldiers at Temporary hospital at Javits CenterPhoto from the Office of Governor Cuomo

Watch Governor Cuomo tour the new temporary hospital at the Javits Center here. Next, check out 12 groundbreaking hospitals in NYC that have closed