Fairview Developmental Center Selected as Alternative Care Site to Fight COVID-19 and Create Medical Surge Capacity in Orange County


SACRAMENTO – As California continues to build hospital bed capacity to fight COVID-19, the California Health and Human Services Agency and California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services announced today that the Fairview Developmental Center will serve as an alternative care site to serve patients in Costa Mesa and Orange County.

The Fairview site – which is being established in partnership with healthcare providers and local government in the region – will serve as subacute alternative care site to relieve stress on hospitals in the surrounding region.

The use of Fairview Developmental Center as an alternative care site is part of a wider effort by Governor Gavin Newsom and the State of California to increase hospital capacity by more than 50,000 beds by the end of May.

This site will be staffed by state medical personnel and integrated into the local health system. Admissions to the Fairview site will be determined by local medical providers with an emphasis on moving patients who require monitoring and low to medium levels of care. The opening of the site will free up beds at traditional hospitals to serve patients with more severe diagnoses.

Earlier this week Governor Newsom launched an initiative to expand California’s health care workforce and recruit health care professionals to staff the COVID-19 surge. Interested medical and health care professionals are encouraged to visit www.healthcorps.ca.gov for more information.

Members of the public requiring medical attention for COVID-19 should continue to consult with their physicians and should not seek admission or care directly at this site.

“In addition to working toward solutions for individuals who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, the Department of Developmental Services is pleased to be a part of statewide solutions to meet the moment by increasing hospital capacity for the general public through the utilization of our Fairview facility,” said Department of Developmental Services Director Nancy Bargmann.

“As our nation and country face this public health crisis together, Costa Mesa leaders have undertaken a coordinated and collaborative effort with all levels of government and we remain in constant communication,” City Manager Lori Ann Farrell Harrison said. “With the rise in COVID-19 cases in Orange County to 606 and 10 deaths, it is imperative that we have the resources needed to treat all those who need care.”

“COVID-19 is a beast raging through our communities,” Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley said. “The threat of the virus upends our lives. Our only defense is the strength of our people. It takes sacrifice, courage, patience, trust and strong partnerships. Now more than ever we must join forces to crush COVID before it crushes us. The spread of the virus is real; this is not a test. The true test is whether as a community we can rise to respond, lead well, sacrifice, and follow the science and the experts. I trust we are well prepared and can ace the test. We support the Governor’s aggressive response to COVID-19 and know that preparation for the surge is key. Use of Fairview Developmental Center as an alternate care center for overflow is a resource we now need.”

“As our nation is in the midst of uncertainty, it is important that all levels of government collaborate to find solutions to end this pandemic as quickly as possible,” said Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Michelle Steel. “The County of Orange is working tirelessly with cities like Costa Mesa to protect the health and safety of our residents and offer solutions to house those that need hospitalization and urgent medical attention. I am proud of all the hard work that is being done here in Orange County to tackle this crisis.”

“Around the world and in other states, we have seen the horrific images and heard the heartbreaking stories of COVD-19 patients dying in hospital corridors because there are not enough beds,” said Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach). “We are aggressively preparing for California’s surge to try to avoid that nightmare. The Fairview Developmental Center will provide critical surge capacity in Orange County in order to decompress local hospitals and save lives.”

“California is continuing to serve as a nation-wide example for cohesive, comprehensive, and science-based COVID-19 action,” said Congressman Harley Rouda. “Utilizing the Fairview Developmental Center as a surge capacity site helps ensure Orange County residents and health care providers have the hospital beds they need to treat and triage patients. I applaud the Governor and his administration for this proactive step to put the health of our neighbors, friends, and families first.”

For more information on the state’s response to COVID-19, visit www.covid19.ca.gov.