Coronavirus: USNS Comfort’s mission complete, to leave NYC

Coronavirus - Mission complete for USNS Comfort in New York

NEW YORK — Mission accomplished. The sailors and staff on the USNS Comfort have done their duty and will head home to Virginia.

The hospital ship had been docked at Pier 90 in Manhattan for the past few weeks. The crew treated 179 patients, with only 56 remaining on board Tuesday, WNBC reported.

The announcement came from New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo after he spoke with President Donald Trump.

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Trump said Tuesday that the Comfort will be readied for its next mission, CNBC reported. Pentagon officials said that will be at the direction of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Cuomo said that while the Comfort is leaving New York City soon, testing for coronavirus will be ramped up, WABC reported.

States will be in charge of logistics while the federal government will get supplies from manufacturers and distributors.

Officials said hospitalizations appear to have reached the peak as people comply with stay-at-home rules, WNBC reported.

Cuomo also announced that some hospitals in upstate New York can start outpatient elective surgeries next week and he will look at opening the state using a regional approach.

Meanwhile, the sister ship to the Comfort, the USNS Mercy, will remain at the Port of Los Angeles. But at least seven sailors assigned to the ship have tested positive for COVID-19, The Los Angeles Times reported last week. It is still receiving patients. The ship’s crew has treated 54 non-coronavirus patients, Military.com reported. It is also sending 40 members of the crew to help at a skilled nursing home in the Los Angeles area.

In this March 30, 2020 file photo, the U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort is escorted up the Hudson River on its way to New York City. On Tuesday, April 21, 2020, while expressing confidence that stresses on New York City's hospital system are easing, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that the ship deployed to New York City to help fight the coronavirus outbreak is no longer needed.
In this March 30, 2020 file photo, the U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort is escorted up the Hudson River on its way to New York City. On Tuesday, April 21, 2020, while expressing confidence that stresses on New York City's hospital system are easing, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that the ship deployed to New York City to help fight the coronavirus outbreak is no longer needed. (Kathy Willens/AP)