US Navy Hospital Ship Comfort to support New York in its fight against COVID-19
Let’s face it, the novel COVID-19 is scary and the headlines surrounding it is even more distressing. Yet, there’s some news doling out glimmers of hope in the midst of these scary times. Read on to find out!!
According to reports, the US Navy Hospital Ship Comfort that President Trump said would help the hospitals in dealing with rapidly rising coronavirus cases, is expected to soon dock in New York.
Why is there a need for a ship?
New York City is the center of the COVID-19 flare-up in the US. The city has reported 914 deaths, which represents more than a quarter of the total deaths in the country.
Therefore, the hospitals in the city are in a dire need for more beds. And, the US Navy Hospital Ship Comfort could help ease the strain.
The History of USNS Comfort
The USNS Comfort ship has a history of helping with disasters in New York, the Gulf Coast, and the Caribbean. After the September 11th attacks in 2001, the ship sailed to New York harbor and treated more than 500 firemen and other responders who were wounded during the relief operations after twin towers of the World Trade Center collapsed.
The ship also docked in New Orleans to treat the victims of Hurricane Katrina and off Haiti’s coast to treat the victims of the devastating earthquake in 2010.
Inside the US Navy Hospital Ship Comfort
According to the Navy, the ship contains 12 fully equipped operating rooms, two oxygen-producing plants, 1000 hospital beds, a blood bank, a medical laboratory, a pharmacy, an optometry lab, and a CAT scan.
What will the ship be used for?
The US Navy Hospital Ship Comfort will not be treating coronavirus patients. Instead, in an attempt to ease the burden on hospitals, the ship will be used to relocate the patients undergoing treatment that are not COVID-related. This will enable the local hospitals to focus their resources and intensive care units on COVID- 19 patients.
The ship could start taking the patients as early as Tuesday and all the patients will be screened before they board the ship.
Why will the ship not be taking coronavirus patients onboard?
The hospital ship will not be suitable for attempting to treat a highly infectious illness that requires patients to be kept away from each other and from healthcare providers who need to wear protective gear and face masks at all times so that they do not end up catching the virus themselves.