Mobile field hospital under construction in Orange County to handle surge of COVID patients

Orange County reported its highest daily number of coronavirus cases over the weekend. The county has rolled out mobile field hospitals to help with the overflow of COVID-19 patients.

There are 4900 doctors, nurses, and technicians from all kinds of medical specialties at UCI Medical Center in the city of Orange. And on one small portion of the campus, Paul Bhatia and dozens of others are working on medical mobile field hospitals made of tents and hardware.

This would add an additional 50 beds according to hospital officials.

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The goal on the campus of UCI Medical Center is to make more room for emergency patients. Brian O’Dea with the medical center says it’ll be like a large patient ward. They’re thinking right now that it’ll be for emergencies involving less acute patients other than those dealing with COVID-19, but that could change by the time it’s finished and opened for use on December 29th.

O’Dea says, "The reason that we are doing this is really to decompress our emergency department. We want to be sure we can treat people efficiently as they come through and this facility is going to help us do that."

According to O'Dea, the tents are thanks to the County of Orange reaching into the CARES ACT for money to get these tents.

It will also be helping out lots of volunteers to help build like Helina Chang. She’s a stay-at-home mom that wanted to lend a hand. She says she’s known COVID patients and wanted to help.

Chang says, "I think that’s why we felt that we’ve been very blessed. We have friends whose parents have passed away."

The tents were completed Monday and now they will fill them with beds and medical equipment.

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