East Penn Press

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Local resident serves on USNS Comfort

Thursday, May 21, 2020 by CONTRIBUTED ARTICLE in Local News

Hospitalman Trevor McLean, of Macungie, is serving aboard the hospital ship USNS Comfort as part of the efforts by the U.S Navy in response to COVID-19.

Comfort arrived in New York March 30 with Navy medical personnel and support staff aboard the afloat medical treatment facility.

Although initially tasked to serve as a referral hospital for non-COVID-19 patients, as of April 6 the ship was taking patients regardless of their COVID-19 status. The ship provides a full spectrum of medical care to include general surgeries, critical care and ward care for adults.

McLean is serving as a Navy hospital corpsman, who is responsible for providing patient care.

“The USNS Comfort arrived in New York City with more than 1,000 medical professionals ready to provide safe, high-quality health care to the city of New York,” Capt. Patrick Amersbach, commanding officer of the USNS Comfort Military Treatment Facility said. “We are grateful to serve the needs of our nation.”

“With doctors, nurses and surgical techs, we were able to provide the normal quality of care to the patients of New York City who need surgical procedures,” McLean said. “With every patient in our ward, that was one extra bed open in one of the New York City hospitals.”

Comfort’s primary mission is to provide an afloat, mobile, acute surgical medical facility to the U.S. military that is flexible, capable and uniquely adaptable to support expeditionary warfare, according to Navy officials. Comfort’s secondary mission is to provide full hospital services to support U.S. disaster relief and humanitarian operations worldwide.

“This mission is different because we’re out here helping people who need it,” McLean said. “I think what we’re doing shows the United States that we are more than a fighting force.”

“This mission hits close to home for myself because I live an hour and a half from where we are now,” McLean said. “I have neighbors who work here as well as friends who came to New York for school. The more we do to help care for the patients, the sooner New York City and the rest of the world can go back to a normal way of life.”

The USNS Comfort left New York April 30 after serving 182 patients on the medical treatment facility.