One of the Navy's Biggest Hospital Ships Just Arrived to Help Los Angeles Deal with the Wuhan Coronavirus

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Posted: Mar 27, 2020 2:50 PM
One of the Navy's Biggest Hospital Ships Just Arrived to Help Los Angeles Deal with the Wuhan Coronavirus

Source: Julio Rosas/Townhall

San Pedro, Calif. — The USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) arrived in Los Angeles on Friday after leaving San Diego as part of the national effort to combat the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic. The Mercy's mission in LA will be to house and treat non-COVID-19 patients so the shore-based hospitals can focus on treating coronavirus cases.

"The men and women of the USNS Mercy and the United States Navy are honored to be here in Los Angeles supporting FEMA, the state of California, the county and the city in their ongoing COVID-19 relief efforts,” said Rear Adm. John Gumbleton, commander of Expeditionary Strike Group Three.

In addition to the scores of media members at the Los Angeles World Cruise Center, many locals came out to show their support and gratitude for the crew and medical staff aboard the Mercy. One woman waved an American flag as the ship pulled in. She explained to Townhall she has a son serving in the Marine Corps and was happy to see the military bringing out the big guns to help the city.

The USNS Mercy pulling into L.A. World Cruise Center. Credit: Julio Rosas

The USNS Mercy pulling into L.A. World Cruise Center. Credit: Julio Rosas

"Glad to welcome the [Navy's] USNS Mercy to Los Angeles. This ship brings 1,000 new medical beds to the [Port of Los Angeles], helping ease the burden on our emergency rooms and ICUs when the cases of COVID-19 grow in the weeks ahead. Thank you to all our partners for making this possible," Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a tweet.

The Mercy's sister ship, the USNS Comfort, will be providing aid the much-harder hit New York City.

Both hospital ships have 12 fully-equipped operating rooms, a 1,000-bed hospital facility, digital radiological services, a medical laboratory, a pharmacy, an optometry lab, a CAT-scan and two oxygen producing plants, according to the Navy. 

When operating at full capacity, the hospital ships have a crew of about 71 civilians and up to 1,200 Navy medical and communications personnel.