CHICAGO (CBS) — Hospital beds, enclosures, and curtains have been set up at McCormick Place as the city prepares it as an alternative care center during the coronavirus epidemic, sources said.
Sources shared a photo of the portable hospital setup on the convention center floor with CBS 2’s Brad Edwards.
SOURCES: Tell me this is inside McCormick Place right now. The city's largest convention center set to serve COVID-19 cases. CPD spox say — "we are unable to confirm that information."@cbschicago pic.twitter.com/7bf1cWSzyg
— Brad Edwards (@tvbrad) April 2, 2020
Chicago Police said they were “unable to confirm (the) information.”
The first shipment of 500 beds arrived at McCormick Place on Monday. There will ultimately be a total of 3,000 beds for patients at McCormick Place, if and when area hospitals need them.
At his daily coronavirus news conference Monday, Pritzker said the alternate care facility at McCormick Place is not meant to replace hospitals.
But it will be there for COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms who don’t require intensive care.
“This is an evolving situation and if our experts determine down the line that McCormick Place should be shifted to a different set of criteria, we will shift our mission to follow the medical experts’ best advice,” the governor said.
The Illinois Emergency Management Agency is working with partners at medical centers that can spare staff members to work in the facilities. The agency is requesting volunteers with medical experience.
The project is thanks to $15 million in federal funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.