Military Logistics

US assigns hospital ships to help COVID-19 relief effort

19th March 2020 - 12:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The DoD has announced that two USN hospital ships are being prepared to help the US tackle the growing COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

USNS Comfort and USNS Mercy (pictured) are set to be deployed to relieve anticipated pressure on local healthcare networks in New York State and California, rather than deal directly with coronavirus sufferers.

USNS Comfort is currently undergoing maintenance in Norfolk, Virginia but it will be sent to New York City once this work is completed.

USNS Mercy is located on the west coast and will be ready for deployment in days rather than weeks, according to DoD spokesman Jonathan Rath Hoffman.

Additionally, the DoD has placed active-duty medical units on alert. This will add a further 1,000 hospital beds alongside those which would be available aboard the hospital ships. 

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