Gov. Murphy, Sen. Menendez tour FEMA field hospital at Meadowlands Expo Center

Gov. Phil Murphy and Sen. Bob Menendez toured the Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus Thursday morning where a field hospital is being set up.

News 12 Staff

Apr 2, 2020, 10:49 PM

Updated 1,480 days ago

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Gov. Phil Murphy and Sen. Bob Menendez toured the Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus Thursday morning where a field hospital is being set up.
The facility is one of four FEMA hospitals that will be set up around the state. The facility will treat patients who do not have COVID-19, but need hospital care. It is meant to treat less severe patients and to alleviate hospitals around New Jersey, which have become overwhelmed.
The field hospital will have 250 beds set up in makeshift hospital rooms. Nurses and sanitation stations have been built, along with portable showers. There is special flooring to absorb sound so that as people walk around, patients won’t be disturbed. Boxes of medical supplies and machines line the floor.
“It took many man-hours and a lot of different partnerships to facilitate getting this built,” says Deputy Incident Commander Clay McClain.
The Meadowlands Expo Center typically houses comic book conventions, pet expos, beer festivals and various industry events. Work on the hospital began less than a week ago. Teams with the New Jersey National Guard are in the final stages of construction, along with help from local unions.
Officials say that it is a joint effort between the National Guard, New Jersey State Police, New Jersey Office of Emergency Management and the New Jersey Department of Health. Representatives from each department make up Task Force Secaucus, which has an incident command center on-site as well.
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The first patients are expected to arrive sometime next week. They will be transported from overcrowded hospitals. All will be low-risk, non-surgical and free of COVID-19.
A second field hospital is already under construction at the New Jersey Expo Center in Edison. That one should open shortly after the one in Secaucus. Officials say that none of the field hospitals are walk-in. Patients will all be transported directly from other hospital wards or emergency rooms.


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