Central Park coronavirus field hospital closing, only 8 patients remain

1010 WINS Newsroom
May 02, 2020 - 6:34 pm

    NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Mount Sinai Hospital Health System said it’s shutting down the small field hospital it erected in Central Park through a partnership with a charity run by Christian evangelical preacher Franklin Graham.

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    Only eight patients remained at the makeshift hospital as of Saturday.

    It plans to stop admitting new patients to the field hospital as of Monday. Officials said it would take about two weeks to treat these last patients and then decontaminate and remove the tents.

    Coronavirus NYC field hospital Central Park
    Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images

    “While this crisis is far from over, this marks a significant turning point in the coronavirus outbreak in New York that gives us assurance that we are returning towards normalcy,” the system said in a statement to The Associated Press. “We are grateful to have fought the coronavirus together alongside the courageous people of New York City.”

    Mount Sinai Health System partnered with the Graham’s charity Samaritan’s Purse to open the field hospital, treating 315 people infected with the coronavirus since April 1.

    The hospital had come under fire from some city officials and activists over Samaritan’s Purse’s practice of having volunteers and staff sign a statement of religious beliefs that included a rejection of same-sex marriage. That practice didn’t apply to the Mt. Sinai doctors staffing the field hospital.

    City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who is gay, called Friday for the hospital to be taken down because of its affiliation with Graham.

    The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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