ANNISTON, Ala. (INTELLIHUB) — The U.S. Health Department announced on Saturday that the FEMA Center for Domestic Preparedness in Anniston will be used to house Americans infected with COVID-19.
A statement from the Department of Health and Human Services reads:
HHS is taking precautions to protect the health of all Americans from Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). To that end, HHS and FEMA agreed to use a federal facility, the FEMA Center for Domestic Preparedness in Anniston, Alabama, as a place for some of the American passengers from the Diamond Princess to stay. These are passengers whom the federal government evacuated back to the U.S. from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan.
The passengers who will stay at the Center tested positive for COVID-19, although at this time they either do not have symptoms or have mild flu-like symptoms. Any of the evacuees who become seriously ill will be transported to pre-identified hospitals for medical care. Under the HHS-FEMA agreement, the Center for Domestic Preparedness will provide the housing, and HHS will provide basic medical care and all other support services for these returning passengers. Passengers will stay in a separate area from the Center’s training participants and will remain at the Center until they are medically cleared.
The Center has unique facilities and routinely offers week-long, hands-on training for large groups of professionals from federal, state and local emergency management agencies, hospitals, public health agencies, and law enforcement agencies on disaster response.
Although the statement mentions passengers from the Diamond Princess it will also serve as a quarantine for others.
The United States has already activated Continuity of Government plans along with mass casualty and pandemic preparedness plans on local, state, and federal levels.
More camps are expected to serve as quarantine centers as the number of COVID-19 cases ramps up.