LANSING, MICH. -- Officials say a field hospital at Detroit's downtown convention centre could gets its first COVID-19 patients this week.

The federal government has turned the TCF Center, formerly known as Cobo Center, into a 1,000-bed site.

“It doesn’t mean we’ll immediately see a thousand patients,” Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, the state’s medical executive.“But we’ll have enough staff to start seeing patients as they're transferred from other hospitals. We still need medical volunteers. There’s no question about it."

Across the border, Windsor is also setting up a field hospital at St. Clair College.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says Detroit-area hospitals are running "dangerously low" on personal protection equipment.

She also reports an "incredible surge" in the number of unemployment claims. Whitmer promises that people will get paid, despite computer woes and bureaucratic red tape. The governor gave an update on the coronavirus after the number of cases rose to 15,700 and 617 deaths over the weekend.

With files from CTV Windsor.