New York, NY — In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Elmhurst Hospital in New York City is reportedly at a breaking point after 13 people died there within a 24-hour period.
“Elmhurst is at the center of this crisis,” said Christopher Miller, a spokesman for the city public hospital systems said in a statement, according to New York Post. “It’s the number one priority of our public hospital system right now.”
“Staff are doing everything in our power to save every person who contracts COVID-19. But unfortunately, this virus continues to take an especially terrible toll on the elderly and people with preexisting conditions,” he added.
According to hospital officials, the 545-bed hospital is currently functioning at over 125% capacity, compared to its usual 80% capacity rate. The hospital has been in desperate need of protective equipment and supplies as well.
An ER nurse described the situation at the hospital as a “war zone,” saying that people have lined up outside the hospital, mostly to get tested for COVID-19. Some patients died inside the ER without having been able to be treated.
At least 25 staffers from other hospitals were added to Elmhurst in a 24-hour span. Ventilators and 10,000 face masks were recently provided to the hospital, but a lot more is needed to continuously provide the overwhelming increase of people infected with the coronavirus.
Recent reports confirmed there are a total of 20,011 positive cases of coronavirus in New York City and 280 people have died.
Elmhurst staffers on the front lines are “doing a tremendous job with limited resources they have,” said City Councilman Francisco Moya. But because the hospital is “at a critical stage,” he said that “the relief has to be there for the doctors and nurses. And quickly.”