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Poland Turning Stadium into Hospital   10/19 06:16


   WARSAW, Poland (AP) -- Poland's government is transforming the National 
Stadium in Warsaw into a field hospital to handle the surging number of people 
infected with the coronavirus.

   Government spokesman Piotr Mller said Monday that the stadium will have 
room for 500 patients and will be equipped with oxygen therapy for those who 
need it.

   "We can see that the number of cases is growing so fast that we need to 
secure places for hospitalization for those who need it," Mller said, speaking 
on TVP Info, the state TV's all-news channel.

   However, it was unclear how the government would manage to staff the 
hospital given widespread reports of shortages of doctors and other medical 
officials across the country.

   The stadium, with a seating capacity of over 58,500, was constructed to host 
matches for the Euro 2012 football championship, which Poland co-hosted with 

   Poland experienced very low rates of infection in the spring compared with 
western European countries but is now witnessing an exponential surge of 
coronavirus infections.

   On Monday the Health Ministry recorded 7,482 new coronavirus infections over 
the previous day and 41 deaths. Since the start of the pandemic the nation of 
38 million has recorded 183,248 cases and 3,614 deaths. However, the true rate 
of infection is likely higher.

   In the past day, 36,000 COVID-19 tests have been carried out, meaning that 
nearly 21 percent of all tests came back positive.

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