U.S. Navy’s first expeditionary fast transport vessel USNS Spearhead began a four-month deployment in support of operation Continuing Promise 2017 on January 17.
Continuing Promise is a U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet conducted deployment, focused on civil-military operations including humanitarian-civil assistance activities comprised of medical, dental, and veterinary support to Central and South American partner nations.
Spearhead, with embarked command element led by Commander, Destroyer Squadron 40 (CDS 40) and various supporting detachments, will visit Guatemala, Honduras and Colombia.
The lead ship in the class of the EPF vessels arrived in Mayport on January 20 to conduct final preparations and a rehearsal of the “tent city” setup. Tent city is the term given to the living environment that the forces will see on the ground. This includes several tents for housing accommodations, as well as a mobile kitchen trailer for meals.
This is the first year that Spearhead is the deploying platform for Continuing Promise.
As part of CP-17, U.S. military personnel will work closely with their host nation counterparts and health professionals to respond to the day-to-day needs of the citizens and provide medical, dental and veterinary support at a medical site in each nation.
From January to April 2017, an estimated 15,000 people will be provided a variety of medical services including preventative medical treatments, dental screenings and treatment, optometry screenings, eyewear distribution and women’s health services.