Queen’s Medical Center building infectious disease unit

Coronavirus

HONOLULU (KHON2) — Queen’s Medical Center is a building a state-of-the-art infectious disease unit. It’s a site many said is much needed as numbers of COVID-19 cases continue to rise on Oahu.

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According to Queen’s Medical Center President Jason Chang, the multi-million dollar unit will enable physicians and nurses to care for patients with highly contagious diseases and viruses, like COVID-19, safely.

“If you’re looking at a unit that can help take an infectious patient and keep them safe and keep the staff safe, that’s what we’re building,” said Chang.

The $12.7 million infectious disease unit currently under construction at Queen’s Medical Center is completely appropriate for COVID-19 and any other infectious disease.

“It will include all negative pressure rooms, telemetry, and ICU capable and all of the interfacing so patients can communicate with their doctors and nurses and staff without having to have a lot of people go in and out of their room.”

It’s located on the ninth floor of the Queen Emma Tower. There will be 24 beds staffed with between 20 to 35 employees including doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists and others.

“We want them to have dedicated space and we can’t get it built fast enough.”

Lieutenant Governor Josh Green, the Hawaii COVID-19 healthcare liaison, commended Queen’s Medical Center.

“They’re preparing for the inevitable need to go long-term on COVID-19 so having an infectious disease unit is excellent. Queen’s, in many ways, is the linchpin of our response.”

The only down side, according to Dr. Scott Miscovich, president of the Premier Medical Group of Hawaii said it won’t be completed for another month.

“One thing that did concern me when I heard it is it’s not going to be available until the end of September. I believe that we don’t have til the end of September.”

Chang said Queen’s Medical Center is looking to hire nurses and staff to man the unit.

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