USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) personnel demonstrated their newest patient transfer capability at the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) Exercise July 10.
Two tender boats launched from Mercy to pick up patients from the shore and transported them to the Navy’s hospital ship. This is a likely situation in a humanitarian assistance or disaster relief scenario when the hospital ship is at sea and patients ashore need medical care.
“These tender boats increase our capability significantly,” said Capt. Jeffery Paulson, commanding officer of the Medical Treatment Facility (MTF) aboard Mercy. “These new boats are larger and can accommodate more patients.”
The exercise also provided a valuable training opportunity for Mercy civilian mariners and military medical personnel to coordinate with each other.
Throughout the exercise, Mercy MTF personnel will participate in medical subject matter expert exchanges with other nations ashore and at-sea and will participate in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief exercise events.
Mercy, homeported in San Diego, is in Pearl Harbor participating for the first time in RIMPAC. Mercy is one of two Navy hospital ships, crewed by civil service mariners assigned to MSC.