But now she and her 35-year-old husband, Louise, are both patients at the Renown Regional Medical Center.
“It’s scary, you know, I didn’t expect you to go to work and work from the parking garage,” said Janet Palm, the site’s nursing manager. “We turned it into a hospital, so we don’t consider it a garage anymore.”
As the United States suffers from another lawsuit, hospitals across the country have reduced the bed capacity of their hospitals. Washoe County, the region where Renown serves, now has 10 times the number of lawsuits filed two months ago.
The idea had previously come together in epidemics and community concern, and the building moved from the garage to the health care center in about 10 days, said hospital CEO Anthony Slonim. Now the numbers are climbing, and more are being admitted, with 700 hospital beds filling the parking lot.
Rosalia Martinez was admitted to the hospital before her husband.
“I knew she was sick; I cried and thought she was going to die,” said Luis Martinez. Now, he is recovering from the virus, four beds down.
“He coughs at night, I can hear him. If I scream, he can hear me,” Rosalia said. “He knows I’m still alive.”
Although corona virus patients in parking lots appear to be odd, Luis Martinez said he feels safe there. The venue is clean and the staff are working hard to ensure they all attend.
“I had just completed a seven-day extension in the intensive care unit. There was patient after patient, and after a patient who did not escape from this disease, beyond the physical exhaustion of working a hundred hours that week, I was mentally exhausted,” Drs. Said Jacob Keeperman, medical director of the Renown Transfer and Operations Center. So, he released a tweet thanking his teammates.
So, it was stifled when President Donald Trump and waves of Twitter users responded to his post that the temporary unit was fake.
He said the feedback he received online was the worst day of the epidemic for him.
“It’s not fake, it’s as real as it gets,” Sloanim said. “We are proud to know we are here.”
Other places that struggle with lack of bed capacity also seek unusual solutions.
In March, Central Park’s East Lawn became a 68-bed field hospital, and an additional 1,000 beds were added that month when the U.S. Navy cruise ship arrived in New York City.
“It’s like an extra hospital floating along our coast, and now it can save lives,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said at the time.
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