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 NYC Erects "Makeshift Morgues" Outside Hospitals To Handle Surge In Coronavirus Deaths

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NYC Erects "Makeshift Morgues" Outside Hospitals To Handle Surge In Coronavirus Deaths Vide
PostSubject: NYC Erects "Makeshift Morgues" Outside Hospitals To Handle Surge In Coronavirus Deaths   NYC Erects "Makeshift Morgues" Outside Hospitals To Handle Surge In Coronavirus Deaths Icon_minitimeWed Mar 25, 2020 8:28 pm

nticipating a surge in deaths as COVID-19 continues to spread through New York City, medical authorities have begun erecting temporary morgues outside some local hospitals.
The refrigerated units were first spotted by the Post on Tuesday outside Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan.
A spokesperson for the Office of Chief Medical Examiner confirmed to Gothamist that the new morgues are part of the city's strategy for handling the spike in deaths related to the novel coronavirus.
"They're makeshift morgues. This is all part of the agency's surge plan, consistent with our disaster planning," said Aja Worthy-Davis, the executive director of public affairs at OCME.

NYC Erects "Makeshift Morgues" Outside Hospitals To Handle Surge In Coronavirus Deaths Fill-661x496

She added that the units — labeled Mobile Command Centers — have already appeared at several other city hospitals in recent days, though she could not immediately say which ones. Similar mobile units were deployed by the city's emergency personnel in the wake of the World Trade Center attack in 2001.

On Wednesday, Politico reported that the Department of Homeland Security has determined that the city's morgues will be at capacity by next week, but Worthy-Davis stressed that the city could still find space. In Manhattan alone, OCME has room to store 900 bodies.
Still, the Medical Examiner's office is creating additional morgue capacity in anticipation of a possible surge in COVID-19 deaths.
As of Wednesday morning, the city had 17,856 recorded cases of COVID-19 and 199 fatalities. At least 2,850 people have been hospitalized, including 660 individuals in the ICU.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has repeatedly warned that New York's hospitals are in danger of being overwhelmed, and must act quickly to avoid the dire conditions seen in parts of China and Italy.
Some international medical workers say they've been unable to keep up with the skyrocketing death toll, leading to horrific scenes of bodies piled up in churches, nursing homes, and hospital floors.
In Spain, where the death toll has now surpassed that of China, authorities have transformed an ice rink into a makeshift morgue, as part of a "temporary and extraordinary measure."
In New York City, morgues located in each of the five boroughs typically handle bodies that are either investigated by the medical examiner or not otherwise claimed by family members.
"We do have overflow capacity," the spokesperson noted.
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