Donald Trump ordered “two yuge ships” outfitted for treating patients and currently used by the military to set sail for the most heavily infected areas of America.
According to Trump’s press conference statements on Wednesday, the ships are set for rapid deployment. “They’re getting ready to come up to New York,” he said. “Those two ships are getting prepared to go.” The ships are floating hospitals that are normally used near war zones but are being repurposed to aid in the coronavirus outbreak that experts fear will overwhelm U.S. hospitals. Currently, no hospitals are reporting being overwhelmed with cases.
Mercy is the first ship of her class in the U.S. Navy. She was named for the virtue of compassion, according to Wikipedia. Mercy was converted from an oil tanker into a hospital ship in 1984. This class of ship is the third-largest ship in the Navy. The Mercy can house 1000 patients and is equipped with twelve operating rooms. Among other wonders, it is equipped with radiology, an ICU, a blood bank, oxygen services, medical equipment storage, and more. The Comfort is a similar ship of the same class with the same capacity.
Governor Cuomo responded to the swift action of the president positively. “It’s an extraordinary step, obviously, it’s literally a floating hospital, which will add capacity and the president said that he would dispatch that immediately,” he said.
NEW: NY Gov. Cuomo says President Trump is "immediately" dispatching the USNS Comfort, a US Navy hospital ships with 1,000 rooms and operating rooms, to New York. pic.twitter.com/5pZhOsB8xw
— NBC News (@NBCNews) March 18, 2020
These types of proactive and immediate responses are exactly what emergency operations should look like. Thanks to the president’s quick and decisive actions, New York is receiving all available resources to meet the challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic. The president also said during his press conference that he will be meeting with nurses later on Wednesday and called them heroes. The whole conference can be heard below.
LIVE: Press Briefing with Coronavirus Task Force https://t.co/3WQV4egsWc
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) March 18, 2020
Megan Fox is the author of “Believe Evidence; The Death of Due Process from Salome to #MeToo,” and host of The Fringe podcast. Follow on Twitter @MeganFoxWriter