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30,000-ton Hospital Ship (AH)

Hospital Ships (AH) provide a mobile, flexible, rapidly responsive afloat medical capability to acute medical and surgical care. The use of helicopter evacuation provides a major advantage because they greatly decrease the time between initial care and definitive treatment thereby increasing the casualtys chances of survival.

On 12 November 2008 a China Defense Mashup report by Johnathan Weng noted that a large 30000-ton displacement hospital ship was found in some military harbor in south China, probably in Sanya, Hainan province. According to Chinese resources, this hospital ship was modified from a container ship, which added some medical modules. In 1996, the PLA Navy Medical Research Institute successfully developed a "Ship-used Medical Module System".

The system is based on international standard containers and can quickly set up a fully-functional ship-borne medical system on civilian ships. The US Navy developed the Arapaho concept of operating helicopters from a containership. In the late 1970s and early 1980s the US Navy began experimenting with a modular VSTOL deck to be placed aboard container ships to assist in sea contol for strategic shipping defense. This system was called ARAPAHO. It consisted of a modular flight deck with maintenance vans, quarters for personnel, a fueling facility and an arrangement for a small hangar for approximately 10 helicopters or Harriers. The system could be loaded aboard aship in approximately 4-5 hrs. and be operational in about 14 more hours. In October 1982 the US Navy conducted a most successful although limited at-sea test of Arapaho. The Royal Navy leased the equipment for at-sea evaluation. These trials were carried out with naval observers from Australia, Canada, Chile, Great Britain, the Netherlands, and West Germany.

The self-contained, portable units are capable of being positioned quickly in an area of operations during war or a national emergency. The modular units can contain operating rooms, x-ray equipment, blood labs and pharmacies. Once on the ship, a modular hospital can be created from these standard-sized containers. Possible capabilities include operating rooms, central materials services, x-ray units, triage, post operation / Intermediate Care Unit, physical therapy, pharmacy, dental, mine resistant ambush protection, forward surgical, trauma field, sick call, and chemical agent patient treatment.

Once the customer has depleted the supplies inside the hospital, they have the option of shipping the container back to be refurbished and repaired, or a kit containing the additional needed supplies can be shipped. A staff consisting of general mechanics / inspectors, fabric workers, tool and parts attendants, painters, container handlers, and electronic technicians, work to quickly renovate and repair the container in order to return it to service.

Theater hospitalization services are delivered via modular hospital configurations and / or hospital ships required to sustain forces in theater. These capabilities deploy as modules or multiple individual capabilities that provide increasing medical services in a more robust theater. The care offered either returns the patient to duty or stabilizes the patient to ensure they can tolerate evacuation to a definitive care facility. Services encompass primary inpatient and outpatient care, emergent care, and enhanced medical, surgical, and ancillary capabilities.

30,000-ton Hospital Ship (AH) 30,000-ton Hospital Ship (AH)

30,000-ton Hospital Ship (AH)



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