Coronavirus News: New York hospitals ordered to increase capacity by 50%

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York is ordering all hospitals to increase your capacity by 50% immediately to ease the projected needs for beds and intensive care beds in the coming days and weeks.

"We have 53,000 beds," Cuomo said. "We may need 110,000. We have 3,000 ICU beds, and we may need between 18,000 to 37,000. That is my greatest concern."

Over the weekend, he requested that the Army Corps begin erecting four temporary hospitals in Stony Brook and Westbury on Long Island, in Westchester County, and at the Javits Center in Manhattan.

Cuomo visited Javits Center on Monday afternoon, saying in about a week to 10 days it will house 1,000 federal emergency hospital beds that will act as a backfill to New York hospitals.

"This is going to get much worse before it gets better," he said. "We are still in the relative calm of the storm. You are going to see the number of infections...the number of case increase dramatically."

Material for the FEMA hospitals will be constructed on the main showroom floor of the convention center, and Cuomo says that 320 federal staff members will come to work in the four hospitals.

Cuomo is hoping that the additional 1,000 Army Corps of Engineers hospital beds he is requesting will be approved and would be constructed for "lighter medical care than in hospitals."

Cuomo again called for any reserved medical personnel.

"I'm contacting all the retired nurses, all retired doctors, and I'm asking medical schools to make their staff available, nursing schools to make their staff available," he said. "We're also contacting all registered health care professionals across the state, over 600,000, to ask them to be ready to come in as a reserve staffer."

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