USNS Comfort to arrive in N.Y. early next week

In this Jan. 20, 2010 file photo, the Military Sealift Command hospital ship USNS Comfort is anchored off the coast of Haiti to support Operation Unified Response. (U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Chelsea Kennedy/Released)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 4:53 PM PT — Thursday, March 26, 2020

New Yorkers will soon get much needed help from the U.S. Navy to deal with the ongoing health crisis. On Thursday, Navy officials confirmed the USNS Comfort will be docking in New York City waters as early as next week.

The ship’s arrival date was moved up from April after healthcare facilities in the state began facing supply and staff shortages. It will deliver 1,000 additional hospital beds to New York and help alleviate the strain of non-coronavirus patients.

Governor Andrew Cuomo recently raised concerns about needing more beds than the 53,000 on hand, prompting the White House to take action.

“In addition to large quantities of supplies, I’ve also directed FEMA to supply the following: Four large federal medical stations with 1,000 beds for New York,” stated President Trump.

The president will travel to Virginia this weekend to see the hospital ship off.

“I think I’m going to go out, and I’ll kiss it goodbye,” he added. “It’s a great ship.”

A member of the Brooklyn Hospital Center COVID-19 testing team holds a biohazard bag outside their testing site, Thursday, March 26, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

In addition to hospital beds, the USNS Comfort will also bring 1,100 active duty naval medical staff members and about 60 reserve medical personnel.

Despite the aid, Governor Cuomo has warned his state could need an additional 110,000 hospital beds. He has said states like California, Washington and Illinois will be next to experience an “apex” of cases like this.

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