Header Ads

Breaking News

Pentagon to deploy field hospitals to New York, Seattle


The Defense Department is preparing to deploy field hospitals to New York City and Seattle later this week, Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperOvernight Defense: Pentagon officials estimate coronavirus crisis could last months | Three sailors aboard carrier test positive | Trump slashes Afghan aid Top Pentagon officials estimate coronavirus crisis could last months Overnight Defense: Navy hospital ship heading to Los Angeles | Military field hospitals to deploy to New York, Seattle | Pompeo flies to Afghanistan to revive peace process MORE announced Monday.

“Right now, I anticipate sending a [field] hospital to Seattle and a hospital to New York City,” Esper told reporters at the Pentagon, adding, “my aim is to get them out this week.”

He said five such expeditionary units had been given “prepare to deploy orders,” and the Pentagon is looking to send them to other locations as needed.

He said the deployments will include the hospital, equipment and medical professionals. They will be sent once the Federal Emergency Management Agency validates the move.  

Washington state has the most confirmed cases of coronavirus on the West Coast while New York has the most such cases on the East Coast. 

The Pentagon’s other efforts to help with the outbreak include deploying a Navy hospital ship in San Diego to Los Angeles to help relieve medical facilities expected to become overburdened by coronavirus patients.

The USNS Mercy will treat non-coronavirus patients referred to the ship by hospitals on shore, and it is expected to arrive at the port of Los Angeles “within the week,” Capt. John Rotruck, commanding officer of the ship, told reporters at the Pentagon via teleconference later on Monday. 

The USNS Comfort will deploy to New York City to carry out a similar mission but is not expected to leave its port in Virginia until next week.

Esper also announced Monday that the Pentagon’s health protection level had been upgraded to its second highest setting, putting more restrictions on entering the building.

As of Monday morning, 133 service members had tested positive for the coronavirus, as had 44 civilian employees, 35 dependents and 31 contractors, with one contractor death Saturday.

Esper said he has not been tested for the coronavirus but was monitoring his health. 

He also for the first time acknowledged that the coronavirus pandemic may affect military readiness down the line.  

“If this pandemic continues at the scale and scope of what some are predicting, over time you could start seeing an impact on readiness. … But nothing to which I fear impacts our mission readiness to conduct our national missions,” he said.



Source link

No comments