US Navy deploys ‘Mercy’, ‘Comfort’ in fight against coronavirus

By: News Desk      Published: 11:43 AM, 19 Mar, 2020
US Navy deploys ‘Mercy’, ‘Comfort’ in fight against coronavirus
maritime-executive.com

The US Navy will deploy two hospital ships [field hospitals] amid the shortage of beds and other services in the country trying to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

The announcement in this respect was made by US President Donald at a press conference on Wednesday.

One of these ships, Mercy, which currently stationed in Norfolk, Virginia, will head for New York City, while the other one – Comfort – is planned to be serving any city [not decided yet] along the West Coast.

These field hospitals have 1,000 beds each. Each of the two also has 12 operating rooms, two oxygen producing plants, an optometry lab, a pharmacy and others facilities.

Meanwhile, the exact date of reaching the specified destinations and making these operational has not announced yet because the ships are currently undergoing scheduled maintenance – a process that has been expedited.

Although the ships won’t treat the coronavirus patients because of the close quarters, they will instead be used to treat others like those who’ve suffered heart attacks, strokes, and broken legs. It will enable the hospitals on land to focus on the pandemic.

Earlier, these field hospitals were deployed to New Orleans and Puerto Rico after devastating hurricanes, Katrina and Maria respectively. Comfort was also mobilised for the people in Indonesia in the wake of the 2004 tsunami.