ROHNERT PARK, Calif. (KRON) — In the North Bay, health officials may use the campus of Sonoma State University to care for coronavirus patients if there is a surge of cases.

In Sonoma County, health officials are expecting a surge in coronavirus cases in the days and weeks ahead and they are planning accordingly.

One of the things they want to do is possibly open up an alternative care site at Sonoma State University. The plan would be if the local hospitals needed the extra capacity for patients, they would open up the site and they could put about 580 people on campus, possibly more.

They would use the recreation center gymnasium to house patients who are coronavirus positive who are showing mild to moderate symptoms. They could also put people who maybe are showing symptoms but haven’t been positively confirmed yet to have the virus that could put those in some residential units.

Another block of residential units could be used to house folks who maybe are vulnerable to the virus, those who are 65 or older who might have underlying health conditions.

The center would be run by the Petaluma Health Center in collaboration with Sonoma State University and also the county.

The process has been made a little bit easier because Governor Gavin Newsom has allowed state-owned property like Sonoma State University to be used just for this reason by local health officials.

Now at this point, the center is not open. This is only an overflow situation, they would open it if need be.

Campus at Sonoma State University has been basically closed down to the last couple of weeks classes happen cancelled and currently there are no patients with coronavirus on campus.

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