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Emergency Field Hospital Set Up In Lenoir For COVID Patients

Jessie Wardarski
AP Photo

A 30-bed emergency field hospital is being set up and staffed in Lenoir to deal with an overflow of COVID-19 patients in the region.

Boone-based Samaritan's Purse expects the tent hospital will be ready to accept patients in the next few days. It won't have an ICU for the sickest patients who need a ventilator, but Samaritan's Purse Communications Director Melissa Strickland says it will be a backstop for five hospitals in Western North Carolina.

"Their healthcare workers have been working day and night to fight this disease. They're exhausted, they're stressed, and yet they're continuing to heroically fight. And our goal is to come alongside of them to provide some capacity to take some of the strain off," said Strickland.

Hospitalizations for COVID-19 statewide hit all-time highs at the beginning of January. 

Samaritan's Purse set up field hospitals in Italy and New York earlier in the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Amy is the Daily News Editor at WUNC in Chapel Hill where she manages day-to-day coverage of everything from gerrymandering to rogue emus.
Celeste Gracia covers the environment for WUNC. She has been at the station since September 2019 and started off as morning producer.
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