New York and West Coast to Soon Have U.S. Navy Hospital Ships
Tishya Dwivedi posted on March 26, 2020 |
The U.S. Navy ships will help relieve local hospitals by treating non-COVID 19 patients.

The continuous increase in the number of coronavirus cases in the United States is putting a lot of pressure on the country’s medical facilities and staff. New York has been the hardest hit state so far, with more than 30,000 confirmed cases. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that the rate at which the virus is spreading, the state would soon need more than 50,000 new hospital beds and more than 30,000 new intensive care units.

In an effort to support the medical staff, President Donald Trump announced during a recent news conference that U.S. Navy hospital ships will soon be deployed to New York and the West Coast.

USNS Comfort—the U.S. Navy hospital ship.
USNS Comfort—the U.S. Navy hospital ship.

Andrew Cuomo confirmed that the two hospital ships that would be used for this purpose will be the USNS Comfort and the USNS Mercy. He said that the Comfort is likely to be positioned at the New York Harbor, adjacent to the New York City, while the USNS Mercy will be deployed at the coastal regions of the West Coast.

He further said that the Comfort “has about 1,000 rooms on it. It has operating rooms. It’s an extraordinary step, obviously,” he added, referring to the Comfort’s expected deployment. “It’s literally a floating hospital, which will add capacity.”   

A U.S. defense official said that “Both ships are currently working to complete scheduled maintenance cycles and identify necessary medical staffing to deploy as soon as possible.” He also said that the Mercy will need several days to deploy, while the Comfort—based in Norfolk, Va.—could take weeks to prepare for its assignment.

Although these hospital ships will not cater to COVID-19 patients, they will definitely take some pressure off the local hospitals that are currently unable to treat non-coronavirus patients at these locations.

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