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Army helps make temporary hospital at New York's Javits Center one of the largest in the country

No Comments National News

JMRPhotography/iStock(NEW YORK) — With the Army’s help, the temporary field hospital at New York City’s Javits Convention Center will now hold 2,910 beds, making it one of the largest hospitals in America. Established in record time, the temporary hospital is an example of the surge of federal and military resources into New York to help with the novel coronavirus pandemic, including the Army Corps of Engineers, two Army field hospitals, and the Navy’s hospital ship the USNS Comfort.

Over the last week the Army Corps of Engineers has been busy transforming the convention center’s expansive exposition halls into an overflow medical facility that beginning Monday will treat patients who are not infected with the novel coronavirus. The treatment of non-COVID-19 patients is designed to make it easier for medical facilities in New York to focus treatment on patients infected with the virus.

Originally slated to house 1,000 beds composed of four Federal Emergency Management Agency field hospitals, the Army Corps of Engineers took advantage of the convention center’s design and the arrival of two Army field hospitals from Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and Fort Hood, Texas, to expand the number of beds at the temporary hospital.

“We basically took that four [multiplied] by 250 is 1,000. We thought we could expand it by stretching the ratio,” Gen. Todd Semonite, the head of the Army Corps of Engineers, told reporters Friday. “So today we’re going to plan on having 2,910 rooms up by Monday morning in the Javits Center.”

That number of beds will make the Javits Center hospital larger than the 2,600 bed capacity of New York- Presbyterian Hospital, the city’s largest hospital.

“The Javits Center is an amazing facility,” said Semonite. “Every 10 feet there’s a great big steel door in the floor, you open it up in there is all the electrical; there’s cold water, there’s hot water and there’s a place for sewers, so you can actually do things like sinks, right in the middle of a convention center to be able to make that happen.”

The hospital will be staffed by 350 medical personnel from FEMA and the two Army hospitals.

Non-COVID-19 patients will be transported from hospitals in the New York City area to the convention center, just as they will be at the 1,000-bed Navy hospital ship the USNS Comfort when it is operational in New York Harbor on Tuesday.

Earlier this week, three of the Army’s six field hospitals were ordered to assist in the treatment of non-COVID-19 patients with one of them headed to Washington state and the other two to New York City.

Six hundred soldiers from those the 531st Hospital Center from Fort Campbell and the 9th Hospital Center from Fort Hood flew to the New York on Thursday, ahead of the arrival of their medical equipment that was being transported in 108 tractor trailer trucks

“This is obviously the absolute top priority of the nation right now, and knowing that our very well-trained and capable [531st] Hospital Center is going to be part of this makes us really proud,” Maj. Gen. Brian Winski, the commander the 101st Airborne Division, told ABC News in an interview.

“They’re well trained, they’re prepared and readiness is our watchword; they’re prepared to deploy in a moment’s notice, which is exactly what they did and they are going to make a huge impact,” he added.

While the medical personnel from the 531st Hospital Center will not be treating non-COVID-19 patients, they will still follow guidelines to ensure they do not become exposed to the virus during their deployment.

Prior to their departure, Winski told his soldiers that the length of their deployment to New York will likely be “a matter of months, not weeks” and that his command will do their best to ensure that they and their commands are kept informed of when they will come home.

Their prolonged stay will also have an impact at Fort Campbell’s Blanchfield Army Community Hospital where most of the personnel from the 531st are normally assigned.

“It is requiring us to reorganize,” Winski said, acknowledging soldiers’ deployment will lead to staff adjustments at Blanchfield to ensure that facility can treat COVID-19 cases at Fort Campbell.

“We’re going to adjust how we’re organized up there to ensure that we are configured as best as we can possibly be for larger numbers of COVID-19 patients that require hospitalization.”

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

As people social distance, everyone wants to know 'how to make banana bread'

No Comments National News

strevell/iStock(NEW YORK) — The only thing people seem to be talking about besides coronavirus is baking.

As Americans stay home to “flatten the curve” and practice social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the most tweeted about activities for those at home has been cooking and baking. The hashtag #QuarantineBread emerged, according to Twitter, where twice as many people as usual tweeted about cooking and baking this week.

The baking trend carried over onto Google where a trending search of the week was “How to make banana bread.”

Look no further.

Taste of Home shared their recipe for the “best ever” banana bread, sent in from their reader Gert Kaiser of Kenosha, Wisconsin.

“Whenever I pass a display of bananas in the grocery store, I can almost smell the wonderful aroma of my best banana bread recipe,” she wrote. “It really is that good!”

Get the recipe for this highly rated banana bread below.

Best-ever banana bread

Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Prep time: 15 minutes

Bake time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Yield: one loaf (16 slices)

Ingredients:
1 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 and 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 medium ripe bananas, mashed (1 cup)
1/2 cup canola oil
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions:

In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.

In another bowl, combine the eggs, bananas, oil, buttermilk and vanilla; add to flour mixture, stirring just until combined. Fold in nuts.

Pour into a greased or parchment-lined 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan.

If desired, sprinkle with additional walnuts.

Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 20 minutes to 1 hour and 30 minute or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Cool on wire rack.

One slice: 255 calories, 12g fat (1g saturated fat), 27mg cholesterol, 166mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate (21g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

'I had no idea how hard it could be': Maren Morris went through 30 hours of labor, emergency C-section

No Comments Country Music News

ABC/Image Group LAMaren Morris and husband Ryan Hurd welcomed their first child, Hayes, earlier this week. The proud new parents are overjoyed to have the new addition in their lives, but in a new social media post, Maren reveals that she endured a difficult birth process.

“30 hours of labor ended with an emergency C-section,” the singer explains. “Not what we planned, but I learned pretty quickly that night that having a plan for bringing a human into the world is a fool’s errand. All that matters is that he got here safely.”

On top of those challenges, Hayes was born in the middle of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. 

“Having him in the middle of a global health crisis was also not in the baby prep books, but here we are,” she went on to say. “Holding him and healing my body in a maternity ward that’s eerily quiet from us not being allowed visitors or family at this time, but strangely serene.”

Maren also thanked all the health care professionals that helped her safely deliver her child, concluding her post by saying that she has a newfound respect for mothers everywhere. 

“Ultimately, I can’t thank every single mother enough for going through what you’ve gone through,” she reflects. “I had NO idea how hard it could be, and I’m a measly four days in. The world is changing before our eyes and so am I.”

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Matt Damon and the 'Contagion' cast reunite "virtually" for COVID PSA

No Comments Entertainment News

Photo by Dominique Charriau/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) — Life has unfortunately imitated art for cast of the 2011 film Contagion, which has seen an uptick in streaming since the real-life COVID-19 coronavirus began spreading.

That’s why scientists from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health tapped the stars of the film —  Matt Damon, Laurence Fishburne, and Kate Winslet — to dispense some real-life advice on how to fight the disease.

“In the movie, I played a guy who was immune to the hypothetical virus that was spreading around the world,” Damon says.  “That was a movie. This is real life.”

“I have no reason to believe I’m immune to COVID-19 and neither do you, no matter how young you are,” he adds. “This is a new virus. It’s gonna take some time for our bodies and our doctors to understand it and understand new ways to protect us.”

Damon was joined by fellow Oscar-winner Kate Winslet, who played an epidemiologist in the film.

“To prepare for the role, I spent time with some of the best public health professionals in the world,” she says.  “And what was one of the most important things they taught me? Wash your hands like your life depends on it because right now, in particular, it just might.”

Touting the importance of social distancing, Damon also said, “We can all do this together just by staying apart. Please do your part.”

Similarly, Fishburne talked about the danger of the traditional handshake, noting it was based on showing someone you weren’t carrying a weapon.

“Now we may be carrying one, and not even know it,” he intoned.

Dr. Ian Lipkin, the director of Columbia University’s Center for Infection and Immunity — who was a consultant on the film — revealed this week that he had tested positive for COVID-19.



Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

'Everywhere but On': Matt Stell can’t outrun his pain in brooding new video

No Comments Country Music News

Matthew BerinatoMatt Stell can’t let go of a long-gone love in the music video for his new single, “Everywhere but On.” 

The clip follows Matt as he tries everything he can to ease the pain, traveling from city to city, performing a sold-out show and even trying to numb his memories with a glass or two of whiskey. No matter what, the clip keeps flashing back to a breakup scene in an apartment overlooking Nashville at night. 

“Everywhere But On” follows Matt’s breakout chart-topping hit, “Prayed for You.” The new single is currently a top-40 hit at country radio.

The singer premiered his new music video on Friday, celebrating its release with a live fan Q&A. “From the studio to the road, I had a blast bringing the story to life,” he says of the song on social media

While he’s off the road due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Matt has been hosting a weekly Instagram livestream series called Penned Up. The virtual shows began on March 25, and will feature appearances from special guests such as Lindsay EllHardy and Jameson Rodgers. Matt hosts Penned Up every Wednesday night at 8:00 p.m. CT. 

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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