The US Navy’s Military Sealift Command-operated hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) arrived in the US 7th Fleet area of operations on March 10 to serve as a platform for exercise Pacific Partnership 2018 (PP18).
PP18 is scheduled to have more than 800 US military personnel stationed worldwide, working side-by-side with host nation counterparts to be better prepared for potential humanitarian aid and disaster response situations.
The USNS Mercy and expeditionary fast transport ship USNS Fall River (T-EPF-4) will serve as the mission platforms led by Commander, Destroyer Squadron 31 (DESRON 31).
The 2018 mission spans from February 23 through June 2018. Mercy is scheduled to make mission stops in Indonesia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam. Mission personnel on USNS Fall River are scheduled to make separate mission stops in Yap, Palau, Borneo-Malaysia, and Thailand.
Pacific Partnership began in response to the December 2004 tsunami that devastated parts of Southeast Asia. Along with other nations, the United States deployed US Navy assets, including Mercy, which later returned to the region in 2006 for the first Pacific Partnership mission.
Pacific Partnership 2018 consists of US and partner nation military and civilian personnel working side-by-side with host nation counterparts to be better prepared for potential humanitarian aid and disaster response situations.
Mercy, homeported in San Diego, California is 894 feet long and is outfitted to provide mobile acute and surgical medical services in disaster or humanitarian relief efforts. Hospital capabilities include a wide range of life-saving surgical procedures and blood bank services to diagnostic x-ray or laboratory services.