California Activates Federal Medical Station in Escondido, Opening Additional 200+ Hospital Beds – NBC San Diego

Southern California has a current ICU capacity of 0% and the majority of beds are filled with COVID-19 patients, according to state data

California has activated a field medical center in San Diego County to support overwhelmed hospitals as COVID-19 patients continue to fill up hospital beds, Gov. Newsom said Wednesday.

The Federal Medical Station, which has the capacity to hold 250 additional hospital beds, has sat vacant since April awaiting a time when it may be necessary to provide additional resources for medical centers treating coronavirus patients.

A Look Inside Palomar Medical Center’s Federal Field Hospital

Newsom announced Wednesday that the decision was made to activate the San Diego County facility, which sits on the 10th and 11th floors of Palomar Medical Center.

While the field hospital is not intended to support ICU patients, the additional hospital beds allow other hospitals to “decompress” their overwhelmed systems and allow for more flexibility, according to Newsom.

San Diego County is adding 250 hospital beds exclusive for coronavirus patients at Palomar Medical Center in Escondido.

Palomar Health CEO Diane Hansen on Dec. 9 said there were 202 beds set up and ready to go for this moment. About 50 nurses were ready to staff those beds.

It was not immediately clear when the facility would be up and running. County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said the situation is still developing and public health officials would share information as it comes.

Southern California has a current ICU capacity of 0% and the majority of beds are filled with COVID-19 patients, according to state data.

When it was announced in April, the federal medical station was set to include 200 general use beds, 20 enhanced care treatment beds, 10 adjustable exam beds for triage, five bariatric beds, 25 toddler cots and 24 portable cribs, according to the county.