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Look inside Jackson’s new mobile triage unit built from shipping containers

$2.5 million facility for infectious disease was given to the medical system as a gift

Built in Utah by the HHI Corporation and shipped to Miami, it can operate as a standalone care facility to isolate and treat patients with infectious diseases like COVID-19.

MIAMI – The front-line fighters at Jackson Memorial Hospital just got a new weapon in the war on COVID-19 — a mobile triage unit created from shipping containers.

Best of all, the facility worth $2.5 million was donated to the hospital system.

“A mobile triage unit that can operate as a standalone care facility to isolate and treat patients with infectious diseases,” Jackson Health COO Don Steigman explains.

It’s the brainchild Cliff Hokanson of the HHI Corporation in Ogden, Utah, the company that built the sterile containers used to transport Ebola patients back to the U.S.

“I woke up in the morning, I was praying ... and I thought, ’Hey, you can build this,’” Hokanson says.

He put his team to work, designing and building the mobile triage unit almost nonstop.

“It was nine weeks after we started it was ready to go,” Hokanson says. “About six or seven weeks into it, I woke up and said, ’You’ve got to give it away, because the community needs it.’”

A medical nonprofit familiar with Jackson recommended them, so the facility was trucked in from Utah and installed in three days.

Jackson could really have used this mobile triage unit in July, when the system had nearly 500 COVID-19 patients. As of today, they have 216.

But this unit is here now if there’s a surge in the future.

About the Author:

Michael Putney came to Local 10 in 1989 to become senior political reporter and host of "This Week In South Florida with Michael Putney." He is Local 10's senior political reporter.