THE first coronovirus hospital has opened in China after thousands worked tirelessly to convert the building into a fully functioning 1,000 bed unit in just two days.
The Dabie Mountain Regional Medical Centre in Huanggang, near Wuhan began receiving patients yesterday morning as the snake flu crisis rapidly worsens.
Incredibly, the mammoth project was pulled off in just 48 hours as construction workers, utility companies, paramilitary officers, medical staff and volunteers banded together to fit the building with beds, water, electricity and WiFi.
More than 5,000 workers and a dozen heavy vehicles pressed through two days and nights to complete the task.
The hospital was organised on Friday, as government officials scrambled to secure an area for the thousands of infected patients across China.
The empty building had been intended to act as a a new branch of Huanggang Central Hospital and was planned to open in May.
Medics were given a chance to familiarise themselves with the building before infected patients began pouring in around 10.30 am yesterday local time.
The city of Huanggang, situated around 46 miles from the ground zero, Wuhan has been one of the worst hit cities.
Huanggang and Wuhan were both placed on lock-down last Thursday as the virus swept across the globe at alarming speed.
The virus has claimed 131 lives so far, with 6,000 infected worldwide.
It was revealed yesterday how the outbreak will dredge on for months, potentially killing scores more.
Efforts are underway to find a vaccine, but even the most optimistic timelines suggest eight weeks to several months of scientific development before human clinical trials can begin.
By that time, hundreds more could have died and numerous other countries infected.
Specialist hospitals are in construction all over China, where the virus originated and the worst hit region globally.
Wuhan officials have commissioned two facilities in the region to treat over 2,000 patients.
All are modelled on Beijing’s 2003 SARS pop up clinic which was constucted in just seven days and treated a seventh of China’s infected.