The Slovenian army started preparations Saturday to erect a field hospital at the Edvard Peperko Barracks on the outskirts of Ljubljana. In the event hospital wards are flooded with coronavirus patients, the unit would serve as an isolation centre for up to 120 people.
Brigadier General Robert Glavaš, the acting chief of the general staff, said the army's main field hospital, Role 2, would be relocated from Maribor and erected in Ljubljana within about three days. He expects the job to be completed and the isolation unit operational by Tuesday morning at the latest.
Defence Minister Matej Tonin said the government's crisis response task force had decided to activate the army with the aim of securing additional capacities in the event they are needed. The isolation unit would be able to accommodate 40 patients with severe symptoms and 80 with milder symptoms.
"If it turns out that these mobile units are inadequate, we're considering repurposing the gym at this location to admit more patients," he said.
Slovenia had 181 confirmed cases of coronavirus by 2pm on Saturday. The government has decided to now shift the focus from detecting infections to providing for the most severe cases, which are expected to jump significantly within about a week given the current infection trends.