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USNS Mercy Makes Port Visit in Singapore

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS050131-03
Release Date: 1/31/2005 10:35:00 AM

By Journalist 1st Class (SW) Joshua Smith, USNS Mercy Public Affairs

SINGAPORE (NNS) -- The hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) arrived in Singapore Jan. 29 to take on supplies and embark additional medical and support personnel in support of Operation Unified Assistance.

The hospital ship, one of two in the Naval Fleet Auxiliary Force, deployed Jan. 5 as a part of the multinational disaster relief effort in the wake of the tsunami that struck Southeast Asia.

Mercy departed its homeport of San Diego on 48 hours notice with a skeleton crew comprised of Military Sealift Command mariners and Navy medical personnel that form the nucleus of the ship's Medical Treatment Facility (MTF).

While in Singapore, 115 Navy medical personnel from San Diego, Pearl Harbor and Norfolk, Va., met the ship to augment the MTF. In addition, Mercy embarked 14 medical personnel from the National Public Health Service and 90 members of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) who will assist in providing medical care to disaster survivors.

"This ship will serve as a unique platform for both the ship medical staff and NGOs aboard, and we will use it in an innovative way to best serve those devastated by the disaster," said Capt. David M. Llewellyn, commanding officer of the MTF. The ship's crew also onloaded more than 200 pallets of medical supplies and stores that will be needed to sustain the mission for as long as the ship is needed in the region.

Mercy is an extremely capable medical platform that is well-suited to the task of supporting disaster relief and humanitarian operations worldwide. The ship is one of the largest trauma facilities in the United States, and offers a full spectrum of surgical and medical services.

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