The USNS Mercy has officially taken in its first set of patients after docking in the Port of Los Angeles on Friday as part of President Trump's ramped up efforts to help stop the spread of COVID-19, also known as the Wuhan coronavirus.
The Mercy will be taking on patients who need care that is not related to the coronavirus. This is so shore-based hospitals can be freed up to focus on treating COVID-19 patients.
"I couldn't be more proud of our crew for all the hard work they did to get us here and ready in such a short time," said Capt. John Rotruck, Mercy's Military Treatment Facility commanding officer. "Being able to accept our first patients is a true testament of the teamwork between Mercy, the Navy, the State of California, the county of Los Angeles, and the City and Port of L.A."
"The men and women embarked on board Mercy are energized, eager, and ready to provide relief to those in need," Rotruck added.
Credit: U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Alexa M. Hernandez/Released
The Mercy's sister ship, the USNS Comfort, will be providing aid to the much-harder hit New York City and arrive to the city on Monday. 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.
There are currently around 2,147 coronavirus cases in the Los Angeles area, with 37 deaths. New York City has over 33,000 cases and 776 deaths due to the virus.
“It’s a medical war zone,” says a doctor at Brookdale Hospital.— CNN (@CNN) March 30, 2020
Here's an inside look at a New York City hospital that has been pushed to the brink amid the coronavirus crisis. https://t.co/XYfghmZ7e3 pic.twitter.com/aJKb8Soi8X